GONZALES - Two members of former NBA player John “Hot Rod” Williams’ family are accused of nearly draining a $400,000 “collegiate investment fund” Williams set up in 2002 for his children, the Gonzales Police Department reported Thursday.
Williams’ former wife, Karen Williams Reddix, 47, 17368 Les Chenier St., Prairieville; and Williams’ son, John Francis Williams, 25, 12231 Sweet Bay St., Gonzales, surrendered to police and were arrested Thursday morning, according to a Police Department news release.
On Wednesday, a warrant for the arrests of Reddix and John Francis Williams had been issued accusing both of criminal conspiracy, bank fraud, felony theft in excess of $1,500 and identity theft, police said.
John Francis Williams was one of the intended beneficiaries of the fund, police Sgt. Steve Nethkin said Thursday night, but only his father was authorized to make withdrawals.
Reddix also was booked with forgery, the release stated.
The arrests followed a five-month investigation, Nethkin said.
Williams came to police with concerns that the two were making unauthorized withdrawals from the fund.
Once valued at more than $400,000, the account had been drawn down to $1,800 over a three-year period, from 2005 through 2008, police said.
Reddix and John Francis Williams were booked into the Ascension Parish Jail. Bail information was not available.
“Hot Rod” Williams, a graduate of St. Amant High School and a Sorrento native, played basketball in the National Basketball Association for 13 years.
He played forward and center for the Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks and Phoenix Suns.
The elder Williams made news in May when a party at his Gonzales home ended in gunfire. No one was injured in that incident, but two people were injured in a similar incident at the residence in 2009.
Shots were fired during a fight at Williams’ house on Oct. 31, 2009, police reported at the time.
Three people were arrested in connection with the 2009 fracas, including the alleged shooter, police said then. The accused shooter pleaded guilty in April to a reduced charge after a prosecution witness recanted at trial, prosecutors have said.