911 Transcript From The Night Corporal Eugene Cole Died
A convenience store clerk's call to 911 on the night Corporal Eugene Cole died tells of a familiar customer who stole cigarettes at gunpoint.
John Williams is accused of fatally shooting Corporal Cole before stealing his marked Somerset County Sheriff's Department pickup truck. He then went to the Cumberland Farms store in Norridgewock, where authorities say he committed a theft, before disappearing into the night.
The Attorney General's Office released the transcript of the call when a female clerk told a 911 operator that the "kid just come in here and I...he wanted Old Gold, I grabbed it, he grabbed it out of my hand. He had a water and he was driving a Sheriff's ahh, pickup truck and he had a gun" The clerk described a short, thin man in his late 20's, who was familiar to her. She said she knew him, and then corrected herself, saying that he was often in the store but she didn't know his name.
She went on to say that he was driving a white pickup truck with the Somerset County Sheriff's Office logo on the side and 1312 on the license plate. She remembered the truck, she told the operator, because it had been at the store earlier, when the older sheriff was getting gas. She said it was the sheriff who also has a son in the department.
The operator confirmed that the vehicle belonged to Corporal Cole and that they were unable to reach him. The clerk was then asked which way the pickup went when it left the store's parking lot. She said the vehicle left in a hurry and headed toward Smithfield. The operator told the clerk to lock the doors and wait for police to arrive.
John Williams was caught on April 28th, three days after Corporal Cole was found dead from a single gunshot wound outside Williams' former home on Mercer Road. The manhunt that ensued after Cole's death brought in officers from around the country and the FBI. No motive has been released, although Cole was involved in the arrest of Williams' girlfriend on drug charges just a few days before the killing. Friends also said Williams was nervous about a court appearance in Massachusetts on firearm charges.