Ex-city commissioner Joey Williams confirms early release, home confinement

Former Dayton City Commissioner Joey D. Williams confirmed Thursday he is on home confinement after being released early from federal prison due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Williams, 54, said he does not have COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, and he declined further comment.

His 12-month prison term was scheduled to end on March 16, 2021. Williams had been incarcerated since March at the federal prison in Ashland, Kentucky.

RELATED: Former Dayton city commissioner Joey Williams sentenced to prison

The U.S. Bureau of Prisons public affairs office said Williams was transferred to community confinement on Tuesday. There was no request for early release made to U.S. District Court Judge Thomas M. Rose so there was no ruling on it by him.

“The Bureau of Prisons has statutory authority to transfer prisoners to home confinement under certain conditions without involvement by our office or the court,” said Fred Alverson, spokesman for David M. DeVillers, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio.

RELATED: City builds ‘firewall’ to prevent corruption after bribery convictions

Williams was convicted of one count of corruptly soliciting a bribe and sentenced in January by U.S. District Court Judge Thomas M. Rose to 12 months in prison, followed by two years of supervised release, the first six months of which were to be on home confinement.

Williams was also ordered to pay $28,000 restitution for free home improvements he accepted in exchange for using his influence as a city commissioner in 2015 to help a demolition contractor get $150,000 in contracts from the city of Dayton and CityWide Development Corp., according to court documents.

RELATED: Confidential informants, secret recordings reveal ex-city commissioner bribery scheme

Williams served 16 years on city commission and eight on the Dayton Public Schools board. He was president of the Dayton market for Key Bank, but his employment ended after his indictment in 2019.

Dayton Daily News investigation in January found that a confidential informant had taped conversations with Williams about the bribery scheme.

The newspaper obtained a federal search warrant and supporting documents from the 2015 search of Williams’ Sunnyview Avenue home. Using those and other public records and interviews, our investigation found:

• United Demolition Excavation and Site Management of Dayton was the company Williams took a bribe to assist, and it ultimately did such poor work that the city withheld payment on those contracts.

• Mike Marshall, United Demolition's co-owner and operating manager, is the confidential FBI informant who recorded Williams and another of the indicted defendants, Dayton businessman Brian Higgins. Marshall denied he was the informant.

RELATED: Indictment: Businessman used money from insurance at casino for phone bill

Williams and Higgins are among seven people indicted in a federal public corruption investigation in the Dayton region that was unveiled last year.

Earlier this week Higgins said he will be seeking a delay in his July 27 trial on three counts of mail fraud and one count of wire fraud. He’s pleaded not-guilty.

Former state Rep. Clayton Luckie, also convicted in the probe, was released as scheduled from prison earlier this year.

Luckie, 56, served his four month sentence at the federal prison in Ashland, Kentucky, after pleading guilty to one count of mail fraud in a scheme involving the city of Dayton’s disadvantaged business program.

RELATED: Convicted former Dayton lawmaker wants Trump to pardon him

Sentencing is scheduled for July 29 for former Huber Heights councilman RoShawn Winburn, of Huber Heights, a former city of Dayton business and technical assistance administrator. He pleaded guilty to one count of corruptly soliciting a bribe.

Former Trotwood Mayor Joyce Sutton Cameron, 71, of Trotwood, owner of Green Star Trucking Inc., and Germantown businessman Steve Rauch, 65, who owns Steve Rauch Inc., both pleaded not guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and six counts of mail fraud.

They are scheduled for trial on Nov. 9. Cameron's husband, James Cameron, 81, was charged with the same counts but has not entered a plea.

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