Florida Deputy Torches Home With Family Inside, Authorities Say

by: WBBH News Staff, NBC News Channel, Victoria Costa



TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — A Florida sheriff’s deputy was arrested and accused of setting his home on fire with his wife and children inside, according to the DeSoto County Sheriff’s Office.

Brian Williams, a former deputy with the sheriff’s office, is out on bond after his wife claimed he tackled and held her down before grabbing a torch and threatening to light the home on fire.

Williams and his wife were already in the process of getting a divorce when the incident happened.

An arrest report said Williams wanted to light the house on fire so it would not be turned over to his ex-wife after their divorce.

“There is this fallacy about law enforcement that because cops are cops, because they’re in this position that they don’t have problems.”

Williams’s wife said Brian broke furniture, put holes in the walls, tackled her, and set fire to their bed. 

“She is going through a divorce with Brian, an affidavit said. “Brian said as he was setting the items on fire that neither of them would get the house.”

Williams’ coworkers at the DeSoto County Sheriff’s Office showed up and found both Williams and his wife injured.

“Brian asked several times to be arrested and taken to jail,” the affidavit said.

“If you can’t determine who the primary aggressor is then what should happen because there’s obvious injury, then both should be taken to jail.”

Three weeks later, Williams’ wife filed a domestic violence injunction stating the abuse had been going on for too long. 

Williams was ultimately arrested for arson, domestic battery, and two counts of violation of an injunction for protection against domestic violence, according to DCSO. He was fired from his position at the sheriff’s office last week.

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