GEORGETOWN, Texas (KXAN) — Colby Williamson has been indicted on a felony murder charge for his role in the death of a Hutto police officer.
Sgt. Christopher Kelley, 37, was killed on June 24 during a struggle with Williamson. He was a veteran officer of the Hutto Police Department.
The Williamson County Grand Jury met for six sessions before deciding to indict Williamson on murder on Thursday. The Williamson County District Attorney’s Office says the jury had the option of pursuing a capital murder charge but decided to go with murder. Williamson now faces 5 to 99 years or life in prison.
In the affidavit for his arrest, Williamson, 26, told detectives he took control of Sgt. Kelley’s vehicle and he backed over Kelley during a struggle for the steering wheel.
Texas Department of Public Safety officials say the incident unfolded around 10 a.m. on Herrera Trail in Hutto where a police officer tried to pull Williamson over for a traffic stop. The suspect refused to stop and lead officers on a chase, according to court documents. During the pursuit, Williamson crashed his car on Herrera Trail and ran away.
Sgt. Kelley found Williamson a few minutes later at a home on Wren Cove. Williamson told detectives Sgt. Kelley approached him and told him “he was being detained and attempted to handcuff him,” according to the affidavit. Williamson said he was able to push Kelley to the ground and ran to Kelley’s vehicle and got in the driver’s seat, the affidavit continued. Kelley caught up with the suspect and was standing at the open driver’s door trying to get a handle on the steering wheel and apply pressure to the brake with his foot when Williamson put the car into reverse and ran over Kelley, according to court documents.
When officers pulled up to the home on Wren Cove, they saw Kelley struggling with the suspect. One officer said he saw “Kelley fall from the driver side door of his patrol vehicle and saw the patrol vehicle run over his body.” One sergeant jumped out of his vehicle to provide emergency aid to Kelley while another sergeant continued to pursue Williamson — who was still in Kelley’s vehicle, according to the affidavit.
At the corner of Decker Drive and Creek Ledge Drive, the suspect got out of the vehicle and tried to run again, but officers were able to catch him.
Kelley was taken to Seton Medical Center Williamson, where he died a short time later.
Williamson is from Austin and is currently in the Williamson County Jail charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon on a public servant. Bond has been set at $1 million.
Williamson’s criminal history
Williamson was arrested in 2007 on charges of driving while intoxicated by the Travis County Sheriff’s Office. Prosecutors later changed the charge to obstruction of a highway passageway. He pleaded no contest to the misdemeanor.
He was also charged in 2007 with possession of less than two ounces of marijuana, but that charge was later dismissed.
In 2009 Williamson was again arrested on DWI charges, this time by Austin police. He was convicted of the misdemeanor and spent just over three months in jail.
He was arrested again in 2014 by Round Rock police officers on charges of driving with an invalid license and insurance.
Although the Hutto City manager said in a press conference Wednesday that the suspect in this case was a felon, KXAN could find no felony record for Williamson.
KXAN News spoke to Williamson’s family members who said he recently got mixed up with drugs and the wrong crowd. He has a five-month-old son and “was trying to get clean because he knew he needed to be a good father,” said one family member.
Williamson attended Austin’s Brentwood Christian School for nearly five years. Family members say he then attended Lanier and McCallum High Schools in Austin.