An attorney for a Columbia chef charged in a high-profile 2017 drug-related killing in Old Hawthorne has filed a motion to dismiss the charges.
Attorney Stephen Wyse filed the motion on Friday. He represents 29-year-old Jeffrey McWilliams, who’s charged with second degree murder, robbery and armed criminal action. Counselor Wyse’s motion to dismiss cites alleged violations of a speedy trial.
McWilliams, who was featured on the Food Network’s “Restaurant Impossible” show in 2019, is charged for the December 2017 death of Augustus Roberts, who was brutally pistol-whipped during a home invasion before being shot to death.
Key details about the murder emerged in late March, during a hearing in Boone County Circuit Court. Assistant prosecutor Nick Komoroski read from a search warrant in court, which said the victim was known to possess large amounts of marijuana and money. Komoroski continued to read the court document, which said a triple-X size sweatshirt with Roberts’ blood was located in a Uhaul in Columbia’s Old Hawthorne subdivision after the murder. The prosecutor notes McWilliams is 6’3” and weighs 350 pounds.
Defense attorney Stephen Wyse argued that day that it was not a search warrant, but rather an administrative order.
Judge Joshua Calvin Devine rejected the prosecution’s request that day for a continuance. McWilliams is scheduled to appear again in court Friday for a pre-trial conference. A four-day jury trial is scheduled to begin on April 19 in Columbia.