James D. Willie Arrested, Charged In Mississippi Highway Shootings

Police have arrested James D. Willie, 28, and charged him with murder in the Mississippi highway shootings, which left two people dead.

Authorities also admitted that Willie was not posing as a cop impersonator. ABC News reports that the 28-year-old man was arrested on Tuesday morning on rape and aggravated assault charges. He was found when Tunica County police responded to a disturbance call.

When they arrived at the apartment, a woman claimed that Willie had raped her.

Police took him into custody and, while searching through his possession, found a Ruger 9mm that, after ballistics testing was done, turned out to be the weapon used in the two highway shootings.

James D. Willie has been charged with kidnapping, rape, felony possession of a firearm, and also the murder of Lori Carswell. Police report that charges for Tom Schlender’s murder are still pending.

Authorities also stated, according to ABC News, that Willie’s motive for the alleged shootings was “drugs and robbery.” When referring to the Carswell case, Tunica County Sheriff K.C. Hamp stated:

“We can’t confirm or deny if the car was already parked, if he ran across her or if he flashed her [with lights] to get her to pull over.”

Huffington Post reports that Public Safety Commissioner Albert Santa Cruz said:

“The Bureau of Investigation and Crime Laboratory dedicated all resources available to this investigation. Our citizens have been terrorized by these murders, and we worked tirelessly to resolve them.”

Mississippi Department of Public Safety spokesman Warren Strain told The Associated Press that James D. Willie was not posing as a cop in the shootings. He went on to say that:

“If we’re going to err, we’re going to err on the side of public safety. The fact is that we got him off the street and people can go back to a level of comfort.”