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Oct 5, 2022

Cheryl Williams charged with second degree murder in death of Deputy Lane

Media Contact: Carrie Horstman, Administrator

The Polk County Sheriff’s Office has charged Cheryl Lynn Williams, DOB 5/30/76, with 13 felonies in the death of Deputy Sheriff Blane Lane, who died in the line of duty on October 4, 2022:

• Second degree murder of a law enforcement officer (F1)
• 3 counts aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer (F2)
• 3 counts possession of a firearm by a convicted felon (F2)
• 3 counts resisting arrest (F2)
• 2 counts possession of ammunition by a convicted felon (F2)
• Possession of methamphetamine (F3)

She will be booked into the Polk County Jail upon her release from the hospital, where she remains in stable condition.

Click here to read the news release with early details of the investigation.

"When deputies arrived at this residence following up on a Crime Stoppers tip that Cheryl Williams was there with an active warrant, they gave her every opportunity to turn herself in. She made the choice to hide, and then to jump out while pointing a gun at them. Everyone in that house is a convicted felon with a criminal history, but all they had to do was cooperate, and this tragedy would never have occurred. Cheryl Williams would have been taken into custody peacefully, and would solely be facing her original failure to appear charge. Now she is responsible for the death of Deputy Lane, a young man who had his entire life ahead of him, eager to serve the people of Polk County while making a positive difference as a law enforcement officer." - Grady Judd, Sheriff

After a search of the residence that Williams shares with two others (4345 Foxtown South, Polk City), deputies found the following firearms openly displayed on a gun rack attached to the wall in the hallway:

• A Marlin model 99M1 .22 caliber rifle with scope; one live round in the chamber and seven rounds in the magazine tube
• A Connecticut Valley Arms, Inc. single-shot 12 gauge shotgun
• A bolt-action 410 gauge shotgun; one live round in the chamber

Deputies arrested the two convicted felons who live there, Donald Mathis, DOB 8/11/50 and Joseph Larry Albritton, Jr., DOB 9/18/67, for 3 counts possession of a firearm by a convicted felon (F3), 5 counts possession of ammunition by a convicted felon (F5), and Albritton was also charged with violation of probation.

Mathis was additionally charged with possession of meth (F3) and possession of paraphernalia (M1). Detectives found a small plastic baggie in his bedroom with a substance that tested positive for meth, along with three boxes of ammunition.

Mathis' criminal history includes 13 felonies and 11 misdemeanors. He spent 1.5 years in state prison for cocaine possession. He's had numerous arrests since 1991, on charges such as possession of cocaine with intent to sell, grand theft, battery, DUI, and petit theft. 

Albritton's criminal history includes 8 felonies and 22 misdemeanors. Since 1986 he's been arrested many times, charged with aggravated battery, battery domestic violence, resisting arrest, trespassing, DUI, possession of meth and marijuana, DWLSR, and tampering with a witness.