A Jones County man who admitted to sexually molesting two young family members several times will spend the next decade in prison, according to a plea agreement that was reached in Jones County Circuit Court on Thursday.
Jonathan Williams, 45, was ordered to serve 10 years in the full-time custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections after pleading guilty to five counts of molestation. Williams, who was represented by public defender Cruz Gray,
was facing up to 75 years in prison, if convicted.
The mother of the girls “preferred the plea,” prosecutor Kristen Martin said, “rather than forcing them to go through a trial. One of (the girls) is having serious problems. She had to get a service animal to cope with it.”
The investigation began last September after the mother called the Jones County Sheriff’s Department to report a possible sexual assault. The then-13-year-old girl told Capt. Tonya Madison that the family member had “touched her inappropriately” at his residence. The girl later told a child specialist that he had “touched her privates” on at least three occasions at two different residences, at least once while his wife was asleep, Assistant District Attorney Martin told the
“He asked if it was OK, and she said, ‘No,’” Martin said. The investigation also revealed that Williams had done the same thing to an 8-year-old family member, except with her, he took off his clothes and “made her touch him” and “made her take off her clothes,” Martin said. “He did this willfully and unlawfully to gratify his lust.”
When Judge Dal Williamson asked if the accusations were true, Williams never looked up, but said, “Yes, sir.”
Williams said he was a former U.S. Marine and truck driver.
“I don’t understand how you could do something like this,” the judge said. “I hope you get counseling. What you did is twisted, sick. One victim is having serious, lasting problems from this. I hope and pray they somehow are able to put this behind them and it doesn’t prevent them from having normal relationships one day.”
In addition to the 10 years in prison, Williams was also ordered to serve five years of post-release supervision under the MDOC, register as a sex offender for the rest of his life, pay $1,917. 50 in court fees and fines and participate in the court’s community service program in a duty that is supervised.
Williamson said he was only going along with the plea deal because girls’ mother signed an affidavit saying that was her wish.
“She should know best about the effect going through a trial would have on them,” he said.