Protester Who Advocates Peace Charged with Setting Fire at Berkeley QT

Christine Byers and Michele Munz, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, December 27, 2014

One of the most frequently quoted and photographed Ferguson protesters was charged Saturday with setting fire to a Berkeley convenience store last week.

St. Louis County police arrested Joshua Williams, 19, of St. Louis, on Friday after several local media outlets and store surveillance captured images of him trying to set a pile of wood on fire outside the QuikTrip on North Hanley Road early Wednesday.

Williams confessed to setting fires at the store in a videotaped interview, according to court documents.

Police say Williams entered the QuikTrip shortly after looters shattered its glass doors during protests of the death of Antonio Martin, 18, who a police officer had shot earlier at the Mobil station across the street. {snip}

Williams can be seen in videos both inside and outside the looted QuikTrip, authorities said.


The Post-Dispatch, Bloomberg, USA Today and the Associated Press have quoted and photographed Williams. On Oct. 13, he was photographed walking arm-in-arm with author and activist Cornel West toward the St. Louis University campus where protesters staged a sit-in.

Cornel West arm-in-arm with Joshua Williams

Cornel West arm-in-arm with Joshua Williams

Williams’ most recent confrontation of St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson during a Ferguson Commission meeting landed him in the pages of this newspaper.

Williams came within feet of Dotson and shouted at him as he tried to answer questions from the panel. “Can someone please get this lying (expletive) ho off the mic!” Williams yelled.

Williams has been arrested at least twice during Ferguson-related protests for unlawful assembly as well as refusal to disperse.

Police say Williams used lighter fluid to set fires inside and outside the QuikTrip early Wednesday. He was charged with arson in the first degree, a felony. He is also charged with felony burglary and misdemeanor stealing for allegedly taking a lighter, gum and money from the store.

Williams has been quoted as an advocate for peaceful protests.

An MSNBC profile of Williams in September quoted him as saying, “We have to come together as one and show them we can be peaceful, that we can do this. If not, they’re going to just want us to act up so (police) can pull out their toys on us again.”

Later, he continued: “I learned that we have to stand up and that you can’t get nowhere with violence but you can always move people without it.”

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  • There’s nobody more violent than a black “peace” activist.

    Look at his mugshot. His eyes reek of perpetual malcontent.

    • Sick of it

      The likes of Cornel West tell these thugs what to do and they do it. But we all know he will never be charged for it.

    • Luca

      Looks like a case of fetal alcohol syndrome, cognitive impairment, a missing chromosome and a terminal case of sub-Saharan DNA.

      • Who Me?

        In short, total dumbassery or TNB.

      • kikz2

        the ears are quite low set…..

        • John Smith

          Helps the others get leverage when his head gets stuck in the chicken bucket.

    • Reynardine

      If Obama had a son…

    • The critter looks like a grandma-raper.

      Just sayin’.

      • Reynardine

        As sung to the tune of “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer”:

        “Grandma got raped over by a negro, coming home from our house, Christmas Eve.

        You may say there’s no such thing as black crime, but as for me and grandma, we believe.”

      • Michigan Patriot

        you omitted a generation, also a great grandmother-raper; especially if “daz ” White !

    • JohnEngelman

      If you see someone like that walking behind you, cross the street.

      • Reynardine

        If you see someone like that living in your neighborhood, move out.

        • benvad

          Whitopia Rich Benjamin blames us for moving away from these vermin. Go figure?

          • Reynardine

            Whitopia Rich Benjamin also blames us for displacing them by gentrifying an area or moving in.

            You really can’t win, can you?

          • benvad

            What gets me is why would anyone care about this clowns opinion?

      • This one isn’t your typical specimen that has the usual “nobody’s home” look.

      • John Smith

        Jesse Jackson would.

    • John Smith

      Yep and according the our elites, he and his ilk are our “equals” that just need more “opportunity”.

      Yep, if we just allow them to infest more nice schools, to infest more nice neighborhoods, to infest more nice cities at taxpayer expense, they’ll eventually become doctors, accountants, pilots in equal numbers to the evil, racist whites.

      Yea sure.

      I just came across an MTV show that glamorized a white guy in a loving relationship with someone that could have been this, uh, “youths” sister.

      I must be a “racist” because I wanted to throw up.

      Isn’t it nice of the media elites to constantly get us to reconcile with our racism and how it is actually wonderful it is to mix with these oppressed people of color?

      Maybe our schools, neighborhoods, cities would actually be “culturally enriched” and “strengthened” by more “youths” that look like they could be the Obama’s sons and daughters.

      Yea sure.

      • benvad

        Segregation now and segregation forever!

        • bilderbuster

          We tried both segregation and integration and both were failures.
          Separation now and forever!

          • benvad

            Then deportation is in order!

        • Michigan Patriot

          Anti-genocidal U.N. laws demand it ! Let’s enforce our anti-extinction, moral rights !

    • Douglas Quaid

      Behind those eyes is a powder keg of stupidity and rage ready to go off.

      • Michigan Patriot

        Yes ! He is a bigoted dumb blastered !

    • benvad

      Just behead it.

      • Michigan Patriot

        Where is ISIS when you need them ?

    • bilderbuster

      He looks content to be Cornell West’s boy toy for the night in the photo where they’re walking together arm in arm.

  • MekongDelta69

    Doesn’t Cornel “I’m thinking deep thoughts, while uttering nonsensical polysyllabic words, as I hold my chin to make you think I look important” West look so ‘innocent’?

    • Tarczan

      IMO, West is the winner of the buffonish negro intellectual award.

    • Reynardine

      Note how “light” Cornell looks in comparison to the dark jungle beast on the right.

      “In all the professions and upper echelons of accomplishments, WHENEVER
      YOU FIND AN INTELLECTUAL NEGRO you will find that he is almost
      always a WHITE man, with just enough colored blood to give the liberals
      something to vibrate about.” — George Lincoln Rockwell

  • RebelliousTreecko

    Later, he continued: “I learned that we have to stand up and that you
    can’t get nowhere with violence but you can always move people without

    Grammar wise, he’s implying that violence does lead to somewhere.

    • Who Me?

      Bellcurvious hasn’t yet grasped the finer points of the use of double negatives in a English sentence.

  • phillyguy

    another confused baboon, im just tired of all of this.

  • Bon, From the Land of Babble

    Williams barked into a megaphone….’Who am I? Mike Brown!’ And ‘Fired up, can’t take it no more.’

    He was “fired up” alright — and another “peaceful protester” that flamed out.

    The local Ferguson QuikTrip…has now been repurposed as the epicenter for gatherings and the exchange of information. The front of the lot bears an improvised graffiti sign identifying the area as the ‘QT People’s Park.’

    Williams, a “great kid, an educated kid, a child who knows what he wants and is very active in the community,” was just trying to liberate another QT in the name of social justice and turn it into a “people’s park.”

    • Reynardine

      Something something aspiring rapper, something something turning his life around, something something College football scholarship.

    • WoodyBBad

      I’m sure him’s a good boy. Hims never hurt nobody.

  • Da Troof

    What a national joke.

  • Christorchaos

    I didnt think we would ever beat the revelations that came out in the week or two after the “Gentle Giant” myth was coined.

    But we are truly in high-“you cant make this stuff up territory” with this ……

    Truly, could the Amren satire dept. have scripted this one any better than it is already??

  • RacialRay

    He prob’ly think all da white women salivatin’ over his gangsta azz now. Got his bad self writ up on da AM-ren, nomesayin’?

  • Lygeia

    Slavishly fawnedover by the mainstream press. Then . . . oops he’s a criminal.

    • Mary

      Yes, but remember, he can’t help it. The trauma of White racism forces the poor thing to commit these acts.

    • WR_the_realist

      A very common pattern, regardless of the race of the person being fawned over.

      • Who Me?

        I’ve never seen a White felon take it to quite the levels achieved by the black criminal.

    • Who Me?

      “Slavishly fawned over by the mainstream press. Then . . . oops he’s a criminal.”
      Yep, Just like Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Vonderrit Myers, Eric Garner. . .and on and on and on ad nauseum.

  • kikz2

    i love that it taints cornel loudmouth west… and with less than 3 degrees of separation… henry louis gates jr. as well. 🙂

  • Ed

    Garbage in, garbage out.

  • John Smith

    Negro doesn’t realize what the usage of double negative syntax entails when deciphering the statement employing logic.

  • straightup

    It’s funny how these race-baiting clowns are having their narrative collapse all around them, but still have the gall to proclaim some moral superiority. Their foundation is hollow, but still they chant and wave, burn down buildings, incite violence and animosity towards peace officers, oblivious to their own failings. It’s almost a circus show now. If they were more organized and civil, their message might get across. Now it’s just pop open a bag of popcorn and watch them fail day after day. It’s embarrassing. I kinda feel bad for them. But, not really.

  • 1Forced_Registration

    Police say Williams used lighter fluid to set fires inside and outside
    the QuikTrip early Wednesday. He was charged with arson in the first
    degree, a felony. He is also charged with felony burglary and
    misdemeanor stealing for allegedly taking a lighter, gum and money from
    the store … —> Okay this is what I don’t get. You are at a gas station, a place that has 20,000+ gallons of highly volatile hydrocarbons to pick from and you go for a container of lighter fluid instead of grabbing a bucket and 5 gallons of gasoline?

    The arsonists in prison will be picking on this kid for a long time to come.

    • I knew an arsonist in the Engelwood Federal Detention Center in late 2000. He was also an identity thief and a check-forger. He was completely mean PoS. Gravil (sp?) really hated my sense of humor, though in truth I did my level best to provoke him. He once threw a fit when I deliberately did not wake him up for chow. My laughing at him afterward was quite undiplomatic. He was just an ageing punk, trying to play Billy [email protected]$$. I believe the expression is “All hat and no cattle.”

      My own experience with arsonists is thus somewhat limited, but this one at least was a loudmouthed chicken. I believe that setting a place on fire means one has already lost the argument. It’s not like he’s going to look me up, 14 years later. The coward probably has someone new to be angry at.

  • Burning a building down is effectively a territorial claim, and by committing arson, Williams thought he was saying “Dis here be mine.” The problem with that approach is that a convenience store might directly employ six or so people – depending on how work shifts are organized and not counting the delivery drivers who keep it supplied – while a vacant lot with a shell of smoking cinder blocks standing on it employs nobody at all. What Williams was really saying thus amounts to “Dere be too many jobs here.” He was also ignoring the sales tax revenue that QuickTrip store generated, spent on city projects, so we can add “I don’t need to drive on decent roads.” Property tax revenues – which are slim to none from vacant lots in areas that have been blighted by folks like Williams – pay for things like schools and public libraries. While I doubt Williams has ever read a book in his life, he probably likes using library computers to play games and look at porn online, so he was also saying “I don’t gots ta be haben dat, neither.” God forbid he should work and save for a computer of his own and pay for high-speed internet at home, the way normal people do. I have every confidence he would be quite unable to put a working PC together from scrounged parts, even though this would save him a nice chunk of change.

    Let’s fast-forward five years or so. Williams is freshly released from state prison and his P.O. is on his case about him getting a job (that’s what P.O.’s do). There aren’t any, as the restaurants, convenience stores and retail businesses have all pulled out of Berkeley, MO, because guys just like Williams have made the area untenable for any economic activity other than the sales of street drugs. Williams will then complain that he is being “unfairly” denied employment opportunity, demand whites relinquish some of the giant pile of money he suspects we are collectively sitting on, and claim he has “had enough”. Lather, rinse, repeat.