East Providence murder suspect captured in Texas

James Stevens, 29, of Providence was wanted in connection with the stabbing of Jasper Williams in East Providence, Dec. 10, 2017.

EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — A Providence man wanted in a recent murder was tracked down by U.S. Marshals more than 2,000 miles away, the East Providence Police Department announced Wednesday.

According to police, James Stevens was arrested in Texas and will be brought back to Rhode Island to face murder charges after more than two weeks on the run.

“Yesterday, we got information that kind of directed us toward El Paso,” said East Providence Police Lt. Raymond Blinn.

Blinn said detectives worked well into the night, along with U.S. Marshals, the FBI, the Fugitive Task Force, and the Attorney General’s office until getting word Wednesday afternoon that Stevens was in custody.

Stevens, 29, of Pine Street, is accused of stabbing 24-year-old Jasper Williams outside his East Providence home back on Dec. 10.

Williams later died at the hospital.

East Providence detectives will now travel to El Paso to resume the investigation with Texas authorities.

“These detectives called me every single day, day in and day out,” said the victim’s mother, Alecia Williams. “And they said, ‘Alecia we’re gonna get him, we gonna get him.'”

On Wednesday, Alecia had something to say to police in return. “I thank every single last one of them.”

Alecia Williams said that during the search she met with the mother of James Stevens at the East Providence Police Department.

“She had absolutely nothing to say,” said Alecia. She explained how the woman told her that she had talked to James Stevens last week over the phone. Instead of calling authorities, Alecia recalled that Stevens’ mother called a public defender and that she didn’t look Alecia in the eyes once.

“I wanted to look her face to face to have her experience what I’ve gone through these days,” stated Alecia.

Jasper Williams (Photo courtesy: Alecia Williams)
Jasper Williams (Photo courtesy: Alecia Williams)

The motive for the killing is still not known.

Williams was found guilty two years ago of stabbing two brothers in East Providence in 2012, but his mother said she did not believe his murder was an act of retaliation. She said he didn’t know the suspect.

“It was a senseless tragedy, it’s been very difficult, and they’ve had tremendous poise throughout this investigation and have been very helpful,” Blinn said of the victim’s family.

Family and friends held a candlelight vigil for Williams last Wednesday and he was laid to rest on Friday.