02/16/2024 – Offender and APSO Correctional Officers Arrested in Jerome Stevenson Death Investigation

On November 4, 2023, the Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office (APSO) DC-1 Jail Facility in Marksville reported a crime of violence committed against 26-year-old Jerome Stevenson, who was incarcerated in DC-1 at the time.  Stevenson later died from his injuries.  The APSO Criminal Investigations Unit investigated the matter.  After a finding of probable cause, arrest warrants were issued by a 12th Judicial District Court Judge for the arrest of one incarcerated offender and two Corrections Deputies.  The APSO investigation has resulted in the following arrests:

  • 37-year-old John Contrell Williams of Mansura, LA for Second degree murder. The bond was set at five hundred thousand dollars ($500,000.00).
  • 60-year-old Byron Oneal White of Simmesport, LA for Malfeasance in office. The bond was set at one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000.00).
  • 61-year-old Frank Overbey III of Hessmer, LA for Principal to Second degree murder. The bond was set at two hundred fifty thousand dollars ($250,000.00).

Offender Williams was arrested, booked, and is scheduled to be transferred to another jail facility.  Both Corrections Deputy White and Deputy Overbey were arrested, booked, and transferred to another jail facility in another parish for their safety.  The investigation is still ongoing.

Sheriff David L. Dauzat wants the People of Avoyelles to know that we take our oath of office seriously.  We hold ourselves to a higher standard.  The public has entrusted us to perform our duties in a lawful manner with honesty and integrity.   We will continue to do so.

Note:  All persons named or shown in photographs and/or videos as suspects in a criminal investigation, or arrested and charged with a crime, have not yet been convicted of that criminal offense, and all persons are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

Williams, Overbey & White 02.16.2024

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