Receives death penalty

A jury has ruled Tyrone Jamaal Williams should be executed for the murders of a Hunt County woman and her mother in 2016.

A jury has ruled Tyrone Jamaal Williams should be executed for the murders of a Hunt County woman and her mother in 2016.

The jury in the 196th District Court deliberated for about four hours before returning with the decision at around 8:30 p.m. Thursday, according to Hunt County District Attorney Noble D. Walker.

“This was an extremely brutal crime that unquestionably warranted the death penalty," Walker said. "We certainly respect the jury for their very thoughtful deliberation and pray this outcome will bring Vickie and Nicole’s family some peace after having gone through so much since this offense was committed.”

Opening arguments and the start of testimony in the trial began Nov. 1.

Williams, 35, of San Marcos, had pleaded not guilty to an indictment of capital murder in connection with the deaths of Nichole Elizabeth Gonzales, 27, and her mother, Vicki Ann Gonzales, 51, at a residence just outside of Commerce.

A formal sentencing hearing was scheduled in the 196th District Court Friday morning, at which time Judge Andrew Bench was to formally present Williams with the sentence of death by lethal injection and provide him with a notice of appeal, which is typically automatic in a death penalty case.

The sentence, the first in Hunt County in eight years, concluded more than five years of prosecution in the case.

A 911 call came in at around 1:20 p.m. June 17, 2016 from Vicki Gonzales, who was screaming for help and calling out Williams’ name. The call came from a home in the 7300 block of State Highway 50.

The Commerce Police Department was the first agency on the scene and found the women had been slain. Williams’ vehicle was found about three miles away from the home.

A search began for Williams with the assistance of the Commerce Police Department, Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas Department of Criminal Justice K-9 search team.

At approximately 11 p.m. June 17, 2016 the Commerce Police Department received a call of a suspicious person in the 2700 block of State Highway 24/50, at the intersection of Live Oak Street. When contacted by officers, Williams allegedly gave officers his brother’s name, but Williams’ identification was found in his possession.

Williams was taken into custody without incident.

Williams worked as a long haul trucker for a Fort Worth company.

“First Assistant District Attorney Steven Lilley and Assistant District Attorney Allison Flanagan worked tirelessly over the last several months preparing this case,” Walker said. “They represented the State at an extremely high level during both the guilt/innocence and punishment phase of the trial. Additionally, we are grateful for the work done on this case by the Texas Rangers, Hunt County Sheriff’s Office, and the Commerce Police Department. The guilty verdict and death sentence were a direct result of their thorough investigation.”

Mabel Jean Gonzales of Austin was indicted in June 2017 on one count of tampering with or fabricating physical evidence with the intent to impair. Gonzales pleaded guilty in April 2018 to a lesser charge of attempting to tamper with or fabricating evidence.

The attempting to tamper charge carries a maximum punishment upon conviction of from two to 10 years in prison and an optional fine of up to $10,000.

In a criminal complaint filed as part of court records, the Hunt County Sheriff’s Office revealed Gonzales was Williams’ girlfriend and alleged that after she visited Williams in the jail, Gonzales drove to a location near the murder scene and removed items from the site.

Micah Crofford Brown was convicted of capital murder and sentenced to death by lethal injection in May 2013 in connection with the 2011 shooting death of his ex-wife Stella Michelle “Doc” Ray, a Caddo Mills Independent School District teacher. Brown does not yet have an execution date scheduled.

Trending Video

Recommended for you