JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Documents obtained by 3 On Your Side contradict some claims surrounding the arrest and subsequent release of a controversial Facebook Live and radio host charged this week with cyberstalking a Hinds County supervisor.
Those claims, made public Thursday during a news conference spearheaded by William “Napolean” Edwards’ attorney, allege corruption and collusion between city and county officials to falsely arrest him and keep him behind bars to keep him from exercising his First Amendment rights.
Tuesday night, Hinds County Supervisor David Archie met with reporters to discuss Edwards’ arrest and why he was charged, alleging that the radio host said he wanted to execute the supervisor on the air.
Archie’s affidavit, obtained by 3 On Your Side, quotes Edwards as saying he “would put all three of us referring to Malcolm Johnson, Larry White and myself in a line and execute us one by one” with a .50 caliber weapon.
Edwards told reporters he said he was going to execute them with information on his show, which he said holds elected officials accountable by exposing corruption.
Edwards’ attorney, Abby Robinson, told reporters she had no idea why her client had been kept in the Raymond Detention Center a full day after posting bond Wednesday morning.
A pre-revocation warrant issued by the parole divison of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, provided to 3 On Your Side, revealed Edwards had been convicted and sentenced of a felony there, but had violated the terms of his parole, and was declared “a fugitive from justice.”
When asked about why Edwards had been kept an extra day, the Hinds County Sheriff’s Department said it had no choice but to hold him once they were made aware of the outstanding warrant.
Before obtaining those documents, 3 On Your Side asked Edwards at Thursday’s presser about why he was held and whether charges from Texas were a part of that.
“I’m not sure. They said it was something to do with Texas, but to my knowledge, it had nothing to do with Texas. I had been previously, my earlier release had been through Hinds County and had nothing pending in Texas earlier this year when I was released from MDOC,” Edwards said, explaining that if there had been an outstanding warrant for him, it should have been triggered months ago when he was in the county system for a period of time.
On Thursday morning, a Texas warrants officer said the department would not be able to extradite Edwards and required him to sign a form stating he would have to report immediately to a Texas county jail or parole office.
Edwards signed it, but has not yet traveled to Texas to address the warrant.
The radio host, who goes by “Napolean” and “The Cipher” on his shows, said U.S. Marshals took him into custody, not the Jackson Police Department, and maintains none of the arresting personnel showed him an arrest warrant.
“I asked them what I was being arrested for. They said for cyberstalking. I said ‘Cyberstalking? Are you serious? Why are the U.S. Marshals here? He says ‘We received this from [Jackson Police Department Chief] James Davis,’” Edwards said. “They never showed me a warrant. I asked to see one. They didn’t have it. The only time I ever saw a warrant was when I was taken to JPD precinct.”
3 On Your Side obtained that bench warrant signed by a judge the same day Edwards was picked up, even stamped that same day by the municipal court; however, no timestamp was present on the document.
Edwards and his lawyer believe that people in Jackson and Hinds County are working together to silence him and said she believes there was quite a bit of conversation between Davis and Archie that led to Edwards’ arrest.
“You have a government official, a chief of police in the city of Jackson, making a phone call on behalf of one person,” Robinson said, referring to Archie. “You, as a citizen, have the right to call Mr. James Davis and say, ‘well, my house is being broken into right now. Give me a U.S. Marshal over here right now.’ Why would you citizens be treated any differently?”