Crime - Sacto 911

Ask Sacto 911 crime Q&A: What happened to suspect in 2009 shooting death in Valley Hi area?

What happened to Keith Williams, convicted of killing Paul Ray Cousins in May 2009? Was he the only party involved? What was his reason for killing the young man?

– DPH, Del Paso Heights

Keith Williams Jr., identified by authorities as a Sacramento street gang member, was convicted by a jury of first-degree murder in the death of 21-year-old Paul Ray Cousins on May 19, 2009.

A spokeswoman for the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office said Williams, 22, was sentenced April 4 to 32 years to life in prison. He is at Deuel Vocational Institution in Tracy.

According to stories in The Bee, Cousins and a friend had been sitting on a utility box, smoking marijuana, in the 7800 block of Summerview Way in Sacramento’s Valley Hi neighborhood when they were approached by Williams and an unidentified partner.

The prosecutor in his trial brief said that Williams and his partner exchanged gang hand signs with Cousins before fatally shooting Cousins and wounding his friend. The suspects also told the victims to “give up” their belongings.

Williams was convicted for aiding and abetting the killing. Police and prosecutors were never able to identify the person who they believe was the gunman, possibly known by his street name, “Bama.” Jurors also found true two special-circumstances allegations: lying in wait and gang-related murder.