Updated 9:25 a.m.
A 32-year-old woman was picked up by police around 2 p.m. yesterday. Within two hours Tabitha Williams
would be pronounced dead, having hanged herself from a jail cell in the city's south St. Louis police station.
St. Louis police say that the Maplewood woman was picked up in the 5400 block
of Southwest for outstanding bench warrants and transported
to the South Patrol Area station. Around 3:00 p.m., a department employee saw the victim hanging
from an article of clothing in the holding cell. Department employees immediately got the victim down and
was taken to a hospital where she was
pronounced dead at 3:50 p.m. It was later determined that the name she had given to police was not her name but was instead the name of a
Though it is unclear why Williams gave officers a different
name, it could be because she had nine active bench warrants from five different courts (St. Louis, St. Louis County, Ferguson, Florissant and Maplewood) for charges of petty
larceny, driving without a license, driving without insurance, failure
to appear, stealing under $500, and assaulting a person.
Unfortunately for Williams, the relative whose
used when initially identifying herself, turned out to also have
bench warrants issued by the city court. Police say Williams was cooperative after being
into custody and showed no signs of suicidal behavior.
full autopsy will be
conducted by the Medical Examiner. The investigation is being handled
the Homicide Division, which procedurally, handles any cases of an
death. The results of their investigation will be forwarded to the
Affairs Division for review to determine if all department policies and
procedures were followed. Though the investigation is in its
stages, the police say it appears at this point that procedures were