Cuyahoga County

Man Indicted for Crime Spree that Claimed the Life of Salvation Army Employee


Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael C. O’Malley announced that William T. Jones, 27, was indicted on charges for committing a crime spree that began in the City of Euclid with the murder of Salvation Army worker Jared J. Fier-Plesec and ended after a series of carjackings, assaults, and a shooting in the City of Lakewood.

The charges in the 35-count indictment include Aggravated Murder, Murder, Attempted Murder, Aggravated Robbery, Felonious Assault, Burglary, Vandalism, Discharging a Firearm on or Near Prohibited Premises, Grand Theft, and Failure to Comply.

“While all murders offend the peace and dignity of our community, this crime is especially cold-blooded and appears to be racially motivated,” said Prosecutor O’Malley. “Our office is consulting with federal prosecutors to see if this homicide and subsequent crime spree qualify as hate crimes and/or civil rights crimes under the federal statutes.”

On the morning of December 2, 2017, the victim, wearing his Salvation Army uniform, was discussing the Bible with another person in the lobby of Euclid Beach Villa. Jones walked up to the 21-year-old victim and shot him point blank in the side of the head.

Jones fled the scene of the shooting and attempted to rob two males at gun point of their vehicle on E. 156th Street. The driver did not stop, and Jones fired three rounds at the driver and his passenger. Jones then robbed a female at gun point on the same street, taking her vehicle. He drove to the E. 72nd Marina and robbed a 53-year-old male at gun point.

Jones drove the stolen vehicle into the City of Lakewood. As he was driving at a high rate of speed through the Metroparks near the Lakewood/Rocky River border, a group of joggers yelled for him to slow down. Jones stopped the car and opened fire on the group, striking a 36-year-old female in the leg. The victim sustained serious injuries.

Jones then attempted a fourth carjacking on the exit road out of the Metroparks, which failed. Jones threw his now-empty gun into a field at the Metroparks, where it was recovered by police.

After the second shooting, Jones stole a pick-up-truck, which was unoccupied with keys in it, on Sloan Ave. in Lakewood. He abandoned the truck in front of Marine Towers on Edgewater Drive. Jones entered the Marine Towers parking garage where he encountered a 56-year-old female. Jones assaulted her by throwing her on the ground as he stole her car. He crashed the car through the closed garage doors and then struck several vehicles on Edgewater Drive, before the Lakewood Police apprehended him.

Arraignment is scheduled for 8:30 a.m. on December 14, 2017.