Suffolk County prosecutors dropped charges against a 21-year-old man who was arrested for allegedly killing a Dorchester gas station employee last month.
The decision comes days after Kevin Williams, of Dorchester, was released on personal recognizance when prosecutors determined he was not required to be in custody before trial, according to a statement Friday from Suffolk County DA John Pappas’s office.
Authorities say 67-year-old Jose Luis Phinn Williams was shot and killed just after 11:30 p.m. on Oct. 6 in an attempted robbery as he worked at the Fabian Gas Station at 528 Washington St.
The arrest “… was supported by a detailed description of the assailant by an independent percipient witness at the scene; a positive identification of Williams as the gunman; and corroborating video footage — circumstances that clearly supported probable cause for the initial charges,” according to the statement.
A court filing indicates prosecutors reviewed phone records, witness interviews, electronic data, grand jury testimony, surveillance videos, and forensic testing, but they have since decided the evidence in the case against Williams was insufficient, officials said.
“We don’t force the evidence to fit the case,” Pappas said in the statement. “We follow the facts wherever they lead, and today they led us to this decision. The investigation remains open, it remains active, and it remains a priority for us.”
The charges against Kevin Williams initially included murder, possession of ammunition, carrying a firearm with a license, and carrying a loaded firearm with a license, according to a court filing.
Kevin Williams’ family maintained he is innocent. A family spokesman, former Boston NAACP president and attorney Michael Curry, said this week the arrest stemmed from “blatant racial profiling,” The Dorchester Reporter reports.
Anyone with information regarding the shooting is asked to call Boston Police at 617 343-4700.