Skylar Williams was a college student and young mother who was abducted from Ohio State University’s Mansfield campus. Kentucky State Police have now confirmed that she died after a police pursuit in Kentucky with the father of her child, who kidnapped her.
The Kentucky State Police confirmed in a statement that Skylar Williams and Ty’Rell Pounds were the man and woman who died after the police pursuit on an Oldham County Kentucky highway, after which a law enforcement officer fired his weapon at the car.
Williams’ relative wrote on Facebook, “It’s her, they called my cousin and confirmed it with her.” The news release says the officer heard a gunshot emanate from inside Pounds’ vehicle before opening fire.
You can read the full Kentucky State Police statement later in this article. “During this event, the female passenger was struck by at least one round of gunfire,” it says. However, Kentucky State Police now say that Pounds killed Williams, and then the officer, Trooper Joey Brown, shot Pounds.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The University Says Williams Went Missing After Being Abducted From a Parking Lot
According to the OSU Office of Public Safety, the Mansfield suspect, identified by authorities as Ty’rell Pounds, “stole a vehicle at gunpoint. Be on the lookout for a 2019 Dodge Caravan, dark in color, with the license plate FMZ-9621.”
The abduction occurred on February 11, 2019 at around 1:45 a.m., when, according to the news release, “a female student (Skylar Williams) was standing in a parking lot located on our Mansfield campus when she was approached by a male suspect known to her. Reports indicate the suspect displayed a handgun and forced the female student into his vehicle. He then fled the area with the victim.” You can listen to the 911 call made by a witness here.
Authorities added: “The suspect’s name is Ty’rell Pounds….The vehicle has been located by law enforcement but the whereabouts of the victim and suspect are unknown at this time. Local law enforcement is actively investigating. Anyone with details on Pounds’ whereabouts, or the whereabouts of Skylar Williams, should call the Mansfield Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol at 419-756-2222. Do not approach the suspect. He is believed to be armed and dangerous.”
The release concluded: “Victims are never at fault when crimes occur. We remind you to increase your overall safety by being cautious and looking out for one another; being aware of your surroundings and looking assertive; walking with a trusted friend or co-worker, when possible; if a situation makes you feel uncomfortable or unsafe, choose an alternative.”
On the evening of February 11, authorities confirmed that two people were dead in Kentucky “after a shooting on an interstate highway.”
Here’s what Kentucky State Police say about that incident:
On February 11, 2019, at approximately 3:24 p.m., Kentucky State Police Post 5 dispatch was contacted by Gallatin County dispatch in reference to a 911 call from a witness, stating they observed a distressed female at a gas station that was forced into a vehicle by a male. The caller stated it appeared that the female was asking for help and that the vehicle then sped off traveling towards Interstate 71 Southbound. Troopers from Post 5 were dispatched to attempt to locate the vehicle, which was described as a dark colored Dodge Caravan with a Quebec registration plate.
Troopers observed a vehicle traveling southbound in Henry County that closely matched the description provided. A traffic stop was initiated near the 34 mile-marker southbound by a responding trooper when the vehicle failed to yield, continuing southbound without stopping. The pursuit continued into neighboring Oldham County with the operator of the vehicle continuing to evade and failing to stop. Responding Troopers attempted to use stop sticks at approximately the 22 mile marker southbound. The stop sticks were unsuccessful due to the suspect evading their deployment.
The pursuit continued southbound on I-71 with the suspect continuing to evade responding units. Once the pursuit entered Oldham County, KSP troopers were joined by the Oldham County Police Department and the Oldham County Sheriff’s Office. Units from these agencies, as well as other responding Troopers, positioned themselves at the Exit 14 (Pee Wee Valley/Crestwood) ramp.
The suspect exited the interstate at the Pee Wee Valley ramp where he then crossed Highway 329 attempting to reenter the interstate. Due to public safety concerns, the primary KSP pursuit unit performed a legal intervention stop to prevent the suspect’s vehicle from re-entering the highway. After the vehicle came to rest on the ramp, the trooper attempted to apprehend the suspect.
While attempting to apprehend the suspect the trooper heard a gunshot coming from within the vehicle which he perceived as an immediate deadly threat to himself and the female passenger. The trooper drew his service weapon and fired at which time the suspect was struck resulting in his death at the scene. During this event, the female passenger was struck by at least one round of gunfire. The female was transported by Oldham County EMS to the University of Louisville Hospital where she was pronounced deceased by the Jefferson County Coroner.
The male suspect was identified as Ty’rell Pounds (24) of Mansfield, OH. The female victim was identified as Skylar Williams (20) also of Mansfield, OH.
In cooperation with Ohio authorities, it has been confirmed that Ty’rell Pounds was the suspect in the Mansfield Ohio abduction of Skylar Williams. KSP will be conducting a press conference in regards to this incident.
The investigation is being led by the Kentucky State Police Critical Incident Response Team. Kentucky State Police was assisted by the Oldham County Police Department, Oldham County Sheriff’s Office, Oldham County EMS and the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office.
KSP will be conducting a news conference at a time to be determined in regards to this investigation.
“I can just confirm for you that it is an officer-involved shooting and that an officer was involved in this and gunfire was exchanged and the result is two deceased,” said Tpr. Steven Dykes to WHAS11.
Kentucky State Police subsequently said it was Pounds who shot Williams.
Todd Simpson, the man who called 911, told WLWT that williams mouthed help to him while walking into a gas station holding hands with Pounds.
“When they walked in, that girl, Skylar Williams, looked me right in the face and said ‘Help me.’ I mean, she didn’t say it out loud, she just, you know, mouthed it, ‘Help me,'” Simpson said to the television station. “I grabbed my gun and my phone, called 911. I told them what happened. I said, ‘I need a police officer here now.'”
2. Pounds, Who Wanted to Be a State Trooper, Wrote a Message on Facebook to His Son With Skylar, Saying He ‘Let My Feelings Build Up’
On Instagram, Pounds’ profile picture shows him with a young child. “RIH Grandma China??GREENWOOD,MISSISSIPPI ✈️MANSFIELD,OH OHIO STATE MAVS? WEST OAKS Commit???ORLANDO,FL ? ☀️??Student Athlete??? STATE TROOPER?” his profile says, sharing the below video.
One of Skylar’s relatives shared a Facebook post in Pounds’ name that contained the photo of Skylar and Pounds that was ultimately released by the police.
The post references the couple’s child and says, “I hope you become a better man than I was when you turn 18 you’ll get $100,000 be smart with it!! My dream goal was to raise you as a man and for me to become a state trooper!!! Obviously that didn’t happen!!”
He alleged, “Your mother kept me away from you and I was fighting for you through the court system!! Your mother kept teasing and I got overwhelmed, I’m so sorry you have to grow up without us baby!! But we’ll be watching you trust me!!! I love you with all my heart…”
He then added, “I’ve bought everything for you and your Mother up to this point!!… I would like you to become a state trooper any state of your choosing!!” He concluded by saying he was sorry to his family and added, “I let my feelings build up!!…DONT feel sorry for me cause there is nothing you guys could’ve done to stop me!! PLEASE KEEP MY SON OUT OF THE STREETS I don’t want him following my bad ways.”
According to Fox 8, Williams had previously complained to police about Pounds. In one instance, she said he “pulled behind her at a gas station.” She also said she’d been assaulted by Pounds and had a protection order again him, the television station reported, adding that the complaints were under investigation.
The station says that after abducting Williams, Pound took his roommate’s car at gunpoint. Williams was crying, says the report.
3. Williams Was Studying Physical Therapy
On her Facebook page, Skylar Williams wrote that she studied Physical Therapy at The Ohio State University at Mansfield and went to Madison Comprehensive High School, in Mansfield, Ohio. She also wrote that she went to Mansfield Senior High School and Airline High School, and lived in Mansfield, Ohio.
Her profile reads, “2/1/18 ? 20 years young ?.” She had a second Facebook page in which the top post, from earlier in February 2019, reads, “When you always had a suspicion ? #Boomerangshit ?♂️?❤️???? LEAVE MY BABY OUT OF YALL RELATIONSHIP ??” That page says she was single.
Her Instagram page is set to private. The profile reads, “know your worth..??? OSU’20 ?” On Facebook, she mostly posted selfies and pictures of her child with Pounds.
On Facebook, Pounds wrote that he started School at North Central State College in 2015 as a Criminal Justice Major. His photos mostly showed photos with his son or old pictures on the basketball court.
5. Skylar’s Relatives Say the Family Is ‘Rooted in God’
Jaylyn Williams, a relative of Skylar, has been posting about the situation on Facebook. “Prayer warriors please proceed to pray nothings been confirmed at all. Our family is rooted in GOD and I have faith that he will bring my cousin back home to us❤️” she wrote.
A friend shared the above photos on Twitter and wrote, “Smh… remember livin the best 5 years of my life with my cousins ?❤️ shit just seems unreal, she was so sweet and beautiful ‼️ God gained an angel and we lost one ? SKYLAR WILLIAMS will never be forgotten, we love you and we will forever be there for (her son).. she didn’t deserve…”