Arthur Williamson Charged In Detroit Anchors Murder

Arthur Williamson
Arthur Williamson

Arthur Williamson has been charged in Michigan with the murder of news anchor Jim Matthews as well as the attacks on other family members. According to police Arthur Williamson, who was known to the family, would fatally stab Jim Matthews as well as injure 10-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter and the 35-year-old mother of the kids who are believed to have been struck with a hammer however this last part has yet to be confirmed.

What we do now is Arthur Williamson is a felony who has been in and out of prison over his 55 years. Police are still trying to figure out what the motive was behind the brutal attacks. Arthur Williamson has been charged with first-degree murder, felony murder, two counts of assault with intent to murder and three counts of unlawful imprisonment.

Arthur Williamson More News

A convicted felon with a 30-year criminal history was arraigned Monday in connection with the fatal stabbing late last week of WWJ-AM (950) anchor Jim Matthews and attacks on three other family members, but officials said the motive remained unclear.

Arthur Levan Williamson, 55, on Pontiac was charged with seven felony charges in New Baltimore’s 42-2 District Court, including first-degree murder, felony murder, two counts of assault with intent to murder and three counts of unlawful imprisonment. He’s being held without bond at Macomb County Jail.

Arthur Williamson is accused of fatally stabbing Matthews, 57, in an attack on Friday at a Chesterfield Township home that injured three others, including the radio anchor’s 10-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter and the 35-year-old mother of the kids. A media advisory from Macomb County Prosecutor Pete Lucido called it a “hammer attack.”

Macomb County Assistant Public Defender Adrian Cranford represented Williamson during the arraignment where the judge did not read off the charges and denied several attempts by Cranford to bring up the topic of bond. Cranford had no further comment after the arraignment.

Chesterfield Township Police Chief Brian Bassett said at a Monday afternoon press conference that police are still trying to figure out the relationship between Arthur Williamson and the victims. Matthews’ older brother Joe Nicolai, who lives next door to Matthew, said Monday he thinks he’s seen Williamson around a few times.

Lucido said there were no signs of breaking and entering and there is evidence to show the suspect was not an “unwanted guest.”

Authorities are still trying to establish a timeline. Bassett said Arthur Williamson arrived sometime in the middle of the night and Matthews arrived home around 6 a.m. The timeline between then and noon when police were called is still unknown.

Police were called to the Hidden Harbor Condominiums at about noon Friday after a woman escaped the home with her 5-year-old daughter. The woman’s son, 10, was found tied up in a closet with severe injuries from blunt force trauma. Matthews was found dead.

Matthews’ girlfriend Nicole Guertin flagged down a bystander upon escaping the house with her daughter, Matthews’ older brother Joe Nicolai said Monday. Matthews and Nicolai are neighbors and after the bystander called 911, Nicolai said his wife, Jennifer, came outside and held Guertin’s hands in the parking lot.

“My wife called me at work. I’m a plumbing contractor and I just dropped everything,” said Nicolai, who added that he and his brother shared the same last name but Matthews was a professional pseudonym

The neighborhood was put on lockdown Friday as well as the school across the street where Matthews’ children attend, Nicolai said.

Nicolai said he believes Guertin met Arthur Williamson at a support and recovery group and he thinks he’s seen him around a few times. He said he’s worried Guertin may have been manipulated.

“Nicole is very naïve, wouldn’t hurt a fly, always means well,” Nicolai said

Though Nicolai doesn’t have all the details of what happened, he said he knows one thing for certain. He knows what his 10-year-old nephew did when he saw his family being hurt and called him brave.

“I know (my nephew) was attacked brutally and tied up in the closet because he was trying to defend his father and his sister,” Nicolai said. “Ten-year-old boy, not on his watch.”

The 10-year-old boy is in critical but stable condition, while the 5-year-old girl has been released from the hospital, Bassett said. The mother is in stable condition but is being held for observation, he said.

Arthur Williamson was found in the basement, where it appeared he had overdosed and attempted to commit suicide, according to authorities. Bassett said authorities treated him on the scene before he was transported to an area hospital.

Court records show Arthur Williamson who was arraigned on his 55th birthday Monday, has a criminal history that dates back at least 30 years. Since 1993, Arthur Williamson has racked up convictions for assault, assault with intent to commit murder, kidnapping, illegal weapons possession, drugs and violations for assaulting/resisting/obstructing a police officer, according to the Michigan Department of Corrections.

He was on parole on a breaking and entering conviction out of Clinton County until January, eight months before police say he stabbed Matthews. Williamson’s arraignment came as Matthews’ friends and co-workers are reeling from his death, calling him a devoted father and journalist.

A GoFundMe account was created over the weekend to support Matthews’ two kids. The GoFundMe, established by Ashley Quigley, the aunt of Matthews’ two kids, had raised $13,000 by late Monday morning.

Donations will go toward getting her 5-year-old niece and 10-year-old nephew “everything they need,” said Quigley, the sister of Matthews’ wife: “My niece is doing well, but my nephew is in critical condition.”

Quigley said her nephew underwent brain and ear surgeries. Both operations were successful, she said. She called her nephew’s recovery “from a vicious, needless attack” the biggest challenge he has yet to face. She also said she and her husband are taking care of Matthews’ daughter, 5.

“I wasn’t going to make a GoFundMe, but it was recommended,” she wrote on the page, created Sunday. “Anything donated is going to these two kids. They have been through so much and I feel like the least I can do is create something that helps them adapt to what comes after this tragedy.

“Thank you to everyone who is giving us well wishes. It is amazing to see the community pull together for these two children,” she wrote.

Nicolai said his nephew woke up briefly Monday and he’s been in and out of consciousness, but it’s good news so far. Nicolai said he plans on selling his brother’s home to help pay for the care of the two children will require for the rest of their lives due to injuries and trauma.

“I lost my brother, but they lost their father,” Nicolai said. “They need all the attention, and they need all the financial support.”

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