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A man shot himself as Georgia officers tried to question him about 4 jail escapees. He turned out to be a long-missing murder suspect.

Looking for four men who escaped from a Georgia jail on Oct. 16, officers on Monday found a murder suspect who had been missing for more than seven months after supposedly being kidnapped.

The U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force went to a Macon apartment after investigators got a tip about someone who might have information about the escapees. They were greeted with someone firing a gun through the door, Bibb County Sheriff David Davis told reporters.

When a SWAT team arrived, a woman inside the apartment led them to a wounded man. She told them that the man, Christian Demond Williams, had shot himself, deputies said. He was taken to a Macon hospital, where deputies said he was in critical condition Monday afternoon.

Davis said no officers fired their guns.

Williams had been missing since March 5, the night before he was supposed to be tried for murder in the 2021 shooting death of a man at a Macon convenience store. A security camera showed Williams, in a red hat, being attacked by two other men on the front porch of his home. Davis and District Attorney Anita Howard both expressed doubt that Williams had truly been kidnapped.

The battery on Williams’ electronic ankle monitor had failed and the bail bonding company neither notified officials nor instructed Williams to charge it, Davis told WMAZ-TV in June.

“It is sort of suspicious that a person gets kidnapped under surveillance cameras on the day that they were supposed to appear in court,” Davis said earlier.

Court records show Williams no longer has a lawyer on the earlier charges and is listed as representing himself. A phone call and an email to his former lawyer were not immediately returned.

Officers on Monday arrested the woman at the apartment, Mykia Mynesha Williams, and charged her with aiding an escape, jail records show. It’s unclear whether she’s related to Christian Williams, or if she has a lawyer to speak for her, in part because a sheriff’s investigator didn’t return a phone call seeking information.

Tracking down 4 escapees is sheriff’s “singular focus”

It’s a sharp turn in a story of a jail escape, including another accused murderer, that had already dominated the news in middle Georgia. The four escapees have been identified as Joey Fournier, Marc Kerry Anderson, Johnifer Dernard Barnwell and Chavis Demaryo Stokes.

Christian Williams’s possible involvement with the four escaped inmates is currently under investigation, the sheriff’s office said.

On Friday, deputies found a blue Dodge Challenger abandoned in the parking lot of a Macon supermarket that they believe was involved in the escape. Authorities followed leads to locate the car, and Sheriff Davis said that he “appreciates the tips and every lead that we have received and is being followed up on.”

Video showed the Challenger had been just outside the jail earlier in the night and appeared to show someone tampering with the fence. That person then brought some items into the enclosed area, and the sheriff said investigators believe the items were used to help the men escape. The men escaped out a jail window and through the fence. The Challenger drove up and helped all four of them escape at about 3 a.m. ET, authorities previously said.

Davis said Monday that tracking down the escapees was his department’s “singular focus.”

“We’re going to get you,” Davis said, addressing the men. “We’re going to find you. The footsteps are moving closer.”

A combined $73,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the inmates. The sheriff’s office is offering rewards of up to $20,000 for and additional compensation is offered by the Federal Bureau of Investigations, Macon Regional Crime Stoppers and the U.S. Marshals Service.

Fournier, 52, is a white male with gray hair and blue eyes who is 5 feet, 9 inches tall and weighs 140 pounds. He was being held on a murder charge after he was accused of killing his ex-girlfriend in February 2022.

Anderson, 24, is a Black male with dreadlocks and is 5 feet, 9 inches tall and weighs 165 pounds. He is charged with aggravated assault.

Barnwell, 37, is a Black male with braids and is 5 feet, 9 inches tall and weighs 190 pounds. He was being held on federal drug charges.

Stokes, 29, is a Black male with short black hair and is 5 feet, 7 inches tall and weighs 160 pounds. He was being held on charges of possession of a firearm and drug trafficking.

Anyone with information about the inmates’ possible location has been asked to report what they know to the FBI’s and U.S. Marshals Service’s respective tip lines at 1-800-CALL-FBI and 1-877-WANTED2. People can also submit tips online through the FBI’s website or the U.S. Marshals Service’s app.

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