Local News

Family, Friends Shocked By N.C. State Students' Alleged Crimes

Posted February 24, 2006

— Two N.C. State students are now in jail, charged in a dangerous crime spree that could cost them everything. One's never been in trouble, without even a traffic ticket on his record. Now, each faces more than 100 years in prison.

According to arrest warrants, James Lyons and Timothy Williams got just $75 in their crime spree. It's a small amount of money for such big consequences. They are now in the Wake County Jail on $5 million bond apiece.

Friends say they were never apart. On Friday, Lyons and Williams were reserved in court -- a much different appearance than their demeanor after their arrests Thursday, when they yelled out to reporters.

Police say the students, both studying in agriculture fields at N.C. State, went on a robbery and shooting spree on and around campus early Thursday. Some of their victims were fellow classmates. Both their families are in shock.

"This is out of his character. This is not my son," said James Lyons' mother, Lewis Lyons.

Lyons, who's from Rocky Mount, has a brief criminal past -- one conviction for simple assault. Williams, from Louisburg, has no record.

"This is a totally bizarre situation in terms of a young man never been involved in anything finding himself in trouble with the law of this magnitude," said Williams' attorney Butch Williams.

Butch Williams doesn't believe alcohol or drugs are factors in this case, which adds to the mysterious behavior for N.C. State dorm mates.

"As far as who they are as a person, this doesn't fit them at all," said friend Brittney Covington.

"They had a lot going for them and this happened," says friend Temeka Brown.

And the two men aren't the only ones dealing with the consequences.

"It's something we've got to handle right now," said Lyons father, Carnel Lyons.

The student victims have been offered counseling. As for the suspects' status at N.C. State, university officials couldn't talk about their cases specifically, but forwarded WRAL the Student Code of Conduct. It clearly states that a student can be expelled for committing a serious criminal offense off campus.


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