State Police Killed Black Man After Traffic Stop for “Broken Taillight,” Suit Says

JEFFERSONVILLE, IN – A year after he was shot dead by Indiana State Police in a traffic stop here, the family of Malcolm Williams filed suit in federal court today saying police killed him in front of his pregnant partner while he was not resisting or posing a threat to officers.

Indiana State Police Officer Clay Boley claimed he pulled over the couple’s car due to it having a broken tail-light, a common police excuse for traffic stops targeting Black people. As an apparent result of the stress related to the pull over, Williams’ pregnant longtime partner, Antoinette Webb, began going into labor. Webb was days away from delivering the couple’s first son.

Boley searched Mr. Williams and confirmed that he wasn’t armed. After Williams helped Webb with her contractions, he told Boley that Ms. Webb kept a gun in her car. Ms. Webb said Williams then proceeded to dangle the gun in a manner in which he couldn’t fire it.

Boley shot Williams six times, killing him. Webb reports that Mr. Williams didn’t fire her gun, while Officer Boley claims he shot Williams only after being fired upon. According to today’s suit, “After the shooting, Defendant Boley made up false claims about the number of shots fired to make the unlawful shooting appear justified.” Another unidentified officer was present and failed to intervene.

Mr. Williams, 27, worked in fast-food restaurant and lived in Jeffersonville, Indiana. In addition to Ms. Webb, he is survived by his newborn son, Malcolm Xavier Ray Williams, and two young daughters, Laela Marie Money and La’Mya ShiAnn Roberts. He is also survived by his mother, Tara Bryant, his father, Fitzgerald Williams, and his sister, Ashtyn Williams.

Mr. Williams’ estate is represented by Jon Loevy, Arthur Loevy, Steve Art and Mark Reyes (pro hac vice petition pending) of Loevy & Loevy Attorneys at Law. Loevy & Loevy is one of the nation’s largest civil rights law firms and has won more multi-million-dollar jury verdicts than any other civil rights law firm in the country. A copy of the suit, Ashtyn Williams, as the Personal Administrator of the Estate of Malcolm Williams v. Clay Boley, and As-Yet Unidentified Officers from the Indiana State Police, Case No. 4:21-cv-00068-TWP-DML, can be found here.

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