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Man charged with armed carjacking, sexual assault, while on conditional release from Hennepin Co.

The complaint states Carl Williams carjacked, abducted and assaulted a woman who had been pumping fuel at a BP gas station in south Minneapolis.

MINNEAPOLIS — Prosecutors say a man who is charged with the alleged armed carjacking and sexual assault of a woman in Minneapolis was out of jail on conditional release when the alleged crimes occurred.

According to the criminal complaint, Carl Stanley Williams, 37, was charged Tuesday in Hennepin County with kidnapping, first-degree criminal sexual conduct and first-degree aggravated robbery for the alleged Jan. 14 incident.

The complaint states Williams carjacked, abducted and assaulted a woman who had been pumping fuel at a BP gas station in south Minneapolis. The complaint says the woman told police she was approached by a man in a ski mask, later identified as Williams, who pointed a handgun at her and told her to slide over from the driver's seat to passenger's seat.

Court documents go on to say Williams drove out of the gas station, allegedly holding a gun to the victim's back and refusing her pleas for him to let her out of the vehicle. The complaint says Williams told the woman, "I'm gonna keep you," and proceeded to demand she hand over her purse.

Williams drove around the area for around 10 minutes before pulling over on the 2400 block of Pleasant Avenue South, according to court documents. That's when prosecutors say Williams kept his gun pointed at the woman and sexually assaulted her.

The complaint says the woman was eventually able to escape after trying to use a stun gun on Williams and yell out for help. A homeowner nearby brought the woman in for safety and called the police, according to the complaint.

The victim's car was found shortly after the alleged incident in a nearby alley, abandoned, and still running.

The complaint says police responded to the same BP gas station later on more reports of a man in a mask attempting to carjack people. Police approached a man matching the description of Williams, and documents say that once officers searched him, they recovered the victim's credit card in his pocket.

But last week's alleged incident isn't Williams' first run-in with law enforcement. Court documents reveal that in August 2020, Williams was arrested and charged with first-degree burglary after he allegedly broke into a Minneapolis home through a basement window. 

Credit: Hennepin County
Carl Stanley Williams

The complaint from 2020 says a family escaped the home after alerting the police to the intruder, later determined to be Williams. The documents go on to say that Williams eventually surrendered to police and was taken into custody.

County records show Williams had his first court hearing in June of 2021, where a judge granted him conditional release. Terms of his release included to remain law-abiding and not to possess firearms, among others. 

Court records further show Williams had multiple theft and trespassing charges filed against him in the time between the alleged burglary, and the carjacking from the gas station.

In wake of a the rise in carjackings over the last few years, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman recently called for the return of MN HEALS — a partnership between county, city, law enforcement, business and faith leaders that was first launched in the late 90s.

Freeman said that with the return of the public-private partnership — MN HEALS 2.0 — the community could use some of the same tactics it used beginning in 1997 to reduce violent crime in Minneapolis.

Freeman also said he would assign two special prosecutors specifically to carjacking cases. 

Shortly following his announcement, Freeman's office told KARE 11 in part, "We would like to get all of the carjacking criminals off the street. In adult cases, our prosecutors routinely request that judges set significant bail in the hopes of keeping these dangerous perpetrators out of the community until their case is resolved."

Williams' first court hearing for the Jan. 14 carjacking and assault is scheduled for Wednesday at 1:30 p.m.

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