The two female defendants charged in the robbery and killing of an 84-year-old woman. One of the suspects, 35-year-old Kimesha Monae Williams, is said to be the sister of Los Angeles Clippers star Kawhi Leonard. Williams’ aunt told the Riverside Press-Enterprise on Saturday that Williams and Leonard are siblings. Kimesha Monae Williams stands charged with murder and robbery of the old lady visiting the Pechanga Resort & Casino in Temulca, California about a week ago.
According to local police, the lady named Afaf Anis Assad was found insentient in a casino’s bathroom at around 8 AM on August 31. The Long Beach resident had only been dropped off for a little early-morning action by her husband and son before apparently being brutally attacked by Williams and Candace Townsel. Assad was hurried to a hospital at Inland Valley Medical Center in Wildomar, but later couldn’t survive.
The Riverside County Sheriff’s Office explained in a statement,
“Southwest Station investigators identified two suspects believed to be involved in the crime. Investigators who had also been closely monitoring Assad’s medical status, learned she would likely die from her injuries. The Central Homicide Unit was notified and responded to assist with the investigation.”
John Hall, spokesman for the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office, would not confirm the relationship, but told City News Service that Williams and 39-year-old Candace Tai Townsel were charged with murder with a special circumstance that makes them eligible for the death penalty. However, a decision has not yet been made by the District Attorney’s Office on whether to pursue the death penalty for either defendant, according to Hall.
It wasn’t difficult to detect the two suspects as the casinos have surveillance cameras all over the place. Not an oversight that wouldn’t be expected – criminals aren’t exactly the brightest individuals. Williams and Townsel had their mugs appear on surveillance as they followed Assad to the bathroom, emerging four minutes later. Assad would subsequently be found in the bathroom with blood coming from her brain and cash missing from her purse which contained $800 to $1,200.
Sgt. Steve Brosche said detectives obtained leads pointing to Williams and Townsel as the alleged assailants, and both were taken into custody; Williams in Perris and Townsel in Hemet. If prosecutors decide to seek the charge, Williams and Townsel are looking at anywhere from 25 to life in prison. The death penalty isn’t an option, since California abolished it in 1972.
The Press-Enterprise reported that a sheriff’s investigator requested that a judge hold Williams without bail because she may flee and
“has family that are well-off and could post her bail.”
The suspects have already appeared before a judge and were denied bail, partly as a result of Williams’ connection to Leonard. He was an All-American collegiate player at San Diego State, and a first-round National Basketball Association pick in 2011. The two-time Most Valuable Player of the NBA Finals was considered to be the top free agent this off-season before signing in July a three-year, $103 million contract with the Clippers.