An Illinois man was arrested last week stemming from death threats against State Sen. Jack Williams (R-Wilmer).

The arrest was first reported Wednesday by the Call News, a Citronelle-based newspaper that covers much of Williams’ Senate District 34.

The Call News reported that threats to Williams via telephone started shortly after a bill Williams sponsored, SB23, passed the Alabama State Senate unanimously, 32-0. The bill will ban lab-grown meat in Alabama.

Williams told the Call News, “Authorities feel confident he is the person who made the major threats against me and my family. I was never given his name and never asked for it because I feel the law enforcement agents have a protocol they have to follow as they investigate these type things.  I was told that he suffered some type of mental illness which probably explains why he might have acted like he did.”

“I wasn’t even afraid of him or the others for my own safety, but I was concerned for the safety of my family," he added. "I take all threats seriously, but I am far from being afraid and I am not going to be intimidated.”

Reports are that shortly after Williams’ SB23 passed the State Senate, the lawmaker began to receive numerous phone calls from animal rights activists who opposed the bill. Some were harassing and a few threatening.

Some animal rights activists favor the use of lab-grown meat and strongly oppose SB23 and its ban on lab-grown meat in Alabama.

1819 News is awaiting returned calls from Williams, editor Willie Gray of the Call-News, and Captain James Rigby of the Major Crimes Division of ALEA’s Theodore (Mobile) district.

Jim Zeigler is a former Alabama Public Service Commissioner and State Auditor. You can reach him for comments at

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