Second Arrest in Murder Case of Gosnell Girl, 11

Second Arrest in Murder Case of Gosnell Girl, 11

The body of Jessica Williams, 11, was found in a ditch near the Big Lake area last August.
Christopher Sowell
Christopher Sowell
Jessica Williams, 11. Facebook photo.
Jessica Williams, 11. Facebook photo.
BLYTHEVILLE, AR - A second arrest has been made in the 2013 murder case of a Gosnell girl.

That's according to Scott Ellington, Prosecuting Attorney for the Second Judicial District of Arkansas.

Officers with the Mississippi County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) and the Arkansas State Police (ASP) arrested Freddie Sharp, III, 29, of Gosnell on Monday afternoon for the rape of Jessica Williams, 11. 

He will make a first appearance in Blytheville District Court on Wednesday morning. 

On Aug. 27 officers from the MCSO and the ASP were called to investigate the case of a missing child. A search and rescue effort ended early the next morning with the discovery of Jessica’s body in a ditch near the Big Lake area.

On Friday, a 17-year-old boy charged in Williams' death was released from jail after his bond was reduced from $2 million cash only to $25,000, according to the Mississippi County Prosecutor's Office.

Christopher Sowell is facing first-degree murder charges after allegedly admitting to killing the girl. He has pleaded not guilty in the case.

Sowell told investigators when Jessica arrived, he became angry with her and pushed her off the bridge onto the ground. 

He said Williams then walked back up onto the bridge and told him she was going to tell her dad about the incident, and he became scared and angrier, grabbed her by the throat and choked her, then pushed her over the bridge again and walked away, according to the affidavit.

"I wish he'd get the same she got. I hope he don't see daylight again," Jessica's father Eric Williams said the day after his daughter's death.

Details in the case have been limited after a gag order was placed over the case in September.

Sowell's next court appearance is Jan. 27. 

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