DPS launches reward program to feature cases involving officers, first responders.
The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), the Office of the Governor and Texas Crime Stoppers today announced the creation of the Fallen Hero Reward – Texas Remembers program. The new program, funded by the Governor’s Criminal Justice Division and administered by DPS, is designed to help generate new investigative leads in unresolved or cold cases involving a Texas law enforcement officer or first responder who was murdered or suffered an incapacitating injury while in the line of duty or while acting in an official capacity. The first case to be featured under the new program is the 1974 murder of Harris County Deputy Edd Williams, who was shot and killed 42 years ago today.
“It is an attack on all Texans when a Texas law enforcement officer or first responder is killed or seriously injured in the line of duty,” said Gov. Greg Abbott. “Worse, it is a momentous injustice when such a crime goes unsolved. This new Crime Stoppers Fallen Hero Reward program was created to help bring closure to these open cases and to ultimately help make Texas a safer place.”
On January 12, 1974, Harris County Deputy Edd Williams was murdered during the course of a robbery at the Victoria Manor Apartments (located at 830 Victoria Drive in Houston, in the vicinity of Tidwell and North Freeway). The suspects in the case at the time were two black males in their early 20s – who would be in their early to mid-60s today. At the time, Deputy Williams was survived by his wife – now deceased – and his then six-year-old son. His son, Yancy Williams, joined the Harris County Sheriff’s Office today at an event in Houston to recognize his father’s sacrifice and to also renew the public’s interest in helping to solve this crime. A reward up to $20,000 is offered for information that results in this case being solved. All tips can be offered anonymously.
“DPS is committed to continuing the search for critical evidence related to these cases and to bring overdue closure for these emergency responders and their loved ones, including the family of Deputy Williams,” said DPS Director Steven McCraw. “DPS feels a deep loss every time our law enforcement brethren or a first responder pays the ultimate sacrifice while serving this state, and we urge anyone with information related to an unsolved crime to come forward.”
Since there is no statute of limitations on the offense of murder, the state has the moral and statutory obligation to pursue these cases to a successful resolution; or until no other lead is viable.
For decades paying rewards to anonymous tipsters has been a proven method in the apprehension of criminals in Texas, and the Fallen Hero Reward program builds on the success of the state’s existing tipster reward programs – the Texas 10 Most Wanted Fugitives and Texas 10 Most Wanted Sex Offenders programs.
To be eligible for the cash rewards, anyone with information about the murder of Deputy Edd Williams can provide anonymous tips in three different ways:
- Call the Crime Stoppers hotline at 1-800-252-TIPS (8477).
- Text the letters “DPS” – followed by your tip – to 274637 (CRIMES) from your cell phone.
- Submit a tip online: https://www.tipsubmit.com/WebTipsCSI.aspx?L=E&AgencyID=650.
For any agency that may have an unresolved or cold case that meets the criteria for the Fallen Hero Reward program, please email Texas Crime Stoppers at email@example.com.