Officer Josh Williams of the Waxahachie Police was killed Saturday morning on his way to a disturbance call when Dylyn Richards’ Suburban crashed into his squad car. The accident occurred around midnight near the Whataburger on Highway 77. Richards, 24, was going 65 miles per hour in a 45 miles zone. His car lights were off and he had a blood alcohol level well above the legal limit. The Chevrolet Suburban struck Williams’ car on the passenger side. Williams was taken to Baylor where he died of his injuries. Richards survived the wreck and recovered at Parkland Hospital. He was taken from the hospital yesterday and placed in the county jail on charges of intoxication manslaughter.
Remembering Officer Williams
Family, friends and fellow officers have gathered at the site of the accident on Highway 77 to share his memory. Williams was a seventeen-year veteran of the Waxahachie police. Williams was a field training officer known for a sense of humor. Devoted to his role as a public servant, the respected officer will be sorely missed in the small, tight-knit Waxahachie Police department.
Williams leaves behind a grieving wife and three daughters. Williams met his wife when they were in grade school. They were married for 25 years. Williams’ father-in-law Thomas Jefferson described him as a, “super dad that always wanted to be a police officer… Josh was such a great dad and husband and we enjoyed him so much. He was a joy.”
History of Drunk Driving
What has already been a terrible loss had been made that much more difficult with the news that Richards had been previously convicted of a DWI in 2009 before he was even 21 years old. Richards only served two days in jail for that offense. Officer Freeman, who worked with Williams, told Fox 4 news, “We deal with this all the time. It’s just sad when sometimes they’ve had 3 or 4 previous DWIs and here they’ve taken the life of somebody else… It’s just hard to accept.” In this case, that someone else was a beloved officer and father.
Richards’ actions have not only affected the lives of all those who knew Williams, it is also impacting his own family’s life. A representative of the Richards family released a statement to the media, “We are very sorry for the loss of Officer Williams and the pain this has caused his family and fellow Officers. This is a tragic situation for everyone involved. Our prayers will be with the family.”
Trend in Officer, Drunk Driving Accidents
FOX local news reported that “this is the third DWI related fatality involving a North Texas officer in the past month.” An officer in Lancaster, Dustin Dodson was killed last week in a drunk-driving accident while he was heading home after his shift on his motorcycle. WFAA also pointed out that this is the fourth public safety official in North Texas to be involved in a major car wreck this month. A Watauga officer was seriously hurt after a crash Thursday night on Old Denton Highway. Everman volunteer firefighter Sergio Rodriguez was killed last weekend in a hit-and-run crash while on foot on Highway 287. Recent reports indicate that the police are still trying to track down his killer.
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