The Sixth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees anyone accused of a crime the right to a speedy trial. The intent of our forefathers was clear: A person who has been charged with committing an offense shouldn’t have to languish in jail for years before getting his day in court.
For the sake of every law-abiding citizen in the Twin Counties, here’s hoping Cedric Sherrod Williams gets his day – soon ... immediately ... today, if possible.
Since 2012, Williams has been charged with 44 crimes for which he has yet to stand trial. Law enforcement officials say they have seized almost five pounds of heroin from him and his alleged co-conspirators, stemming from at least four different busts. On Tuesday night, police said they confiscated three handguns, 1.6 pounds of heroin in 2,750 individual bags, more than $12,000 in cash and a 2004 Nissan.
As Telegram staff writer Brie Handgraaf reported this week, Williams has a long string of convictions for assault, breaking and entering and felony drug charges dating back to 1999. But with regards to the latest trouble he’s accused of committing, he keeps posting bond getting arrested.
There’s little wonder why. If police have managed to seize even half of the drugs and money allegedly flowing around Williams, that still leaves a lot more out there.
That’s a heavy dose of dangerous drugs, guns and money circulating in the streets of Rocky Mount. And if Williams is completely innocent of all of those charges, someone else is certainly making money off illicit activity.
Why hasn’t Williams been tried?
Handgraaf’s calls to District Attorney Robert Evans haven’t been returned. A spokesman for the U.S. Department of Justice said he can’t comment on investigations.
Enough of the delays, red tape and non-committal answers. Send Williams to court and try him. If he’s found innocent, apologize and go after the real bad guys. But if he’s found guilty, put him in prison, preferably for a long time – soon ... immediately ... today, if possible.