Nov 26, 2016

Mayor Tom Butt’s office released the following statement Saturday in response to the allegedly racially-motivated murder of William Sims, a well-regarded Richmond resident and musician who was, according to police, jumped, robbed, beaten and shot at an El Sobrante pool hall on Nov. 12. An online memorial fundraiser for Sims’ family can be found here.

Mayor Butt

“I am saddened and distressed as details emerge following the Nov. 12 murder of Richmond resident William Sims, whose death has been deemed the result of a hate crime. As we work to strengthen our city by bringing people together, we must acknowledge heinous acts of hatred, hostility, and violence that occur in our community and nation as a whole.

Though Mr. Sims’ death occurred outside of Richmond city limits in the nearby unincorporated community of El Sobrante, his passing has left our community stunned and seeking justice for a young man who will be remembered as a talented musician and a kindhearted member of our community.

I am appreciative of the response from law enforcement which has led to the arrest of one suspect, and I hope that the remaining suspects are apprehended and brought to justice expeditiously.

I urge Richmond residents to maintain our city’s values of respect and care for one another, especially during a time when we are experiencing a nationwide surge in hate-filled hostility and threats to public safety. Racism, bigotry, discrimination, and all other forms of hatred and oppression have no place in our city.

My office is committed to working with law enforcement along with local, state and federal representatives to ensure that we remain progressive in fostering an inclusive society and ensuring public safety for all.

I offer my deepest condolences to the family and friends of William Sims and hope all who knew him can find comfort during this unimaginably difficult time.”


  1. Sounds warm and fuzzy with not even a dash of reality. Bigotry has been present in Richmond and continues to be present in Richmond. Our foundation is built in the back of white supremacy. What is our mayor doing to dismantle it? Is he really willing to attack it head on? Not holding my breath!

    Kathrin | Nov 26th, 2016
  2. He is delusional. When are the people of Richmond going to wake up to reality and the actual results (or lack their of) that has come from the leadership in that community. One should question why that city continues to fail despite the fact it sits on prime real estate. The Mayor hasn’t done much to combat crime in his city. See for yourself by looking into what they have spent in investments in crime programs and look at the actual crime rates. If you have see little progress there, then why would you believe that he is going to have any effect on hate crimes?

    I think Kathrin said it best “Not holding my breath”.

    Why | Nov 27th, 2016
  3. This had nothing to do with race i know all the young men involved and not one has a racist bone in his body. Maybe you should be looking for the real killers of this young man and stop spreading this bullshit 4 real tho. The truth will come out and when it does I want a retraction.

    Max Barela | Nov 27th, 2016
  4. ”I know the guys they are accusing of killing him. i grew up with them. not one of them is a racist. not even a little bit. as a matter of fact, the one that was arrested already, has a mixed son… far from being a white supremacist – but a big thanks richmond PD and CoCo county sherrif’s dept., for making this about race. that’s helpful. smh….

    cris | Nov 27th, 2016
  5. “he has a mixed son”

    My birth-father is afro-cuban. My mom and dad are white. My parent are some of the most racist people I know and used me growing up as a shield. I grew up with daily micro-aggressions that were disturbingly traumatic. The fact that he has a mixed son does not mean shit!

    Kathrin | Nov 27th, 2016
  6. Micro aggression is BS psychology. Your posts are dripping wet with anger and hate.
    I suggest you get some help from a real psychologist. I mean that respectfully and sincerely.
    Good luck.

    Richmond Resident | Nov 27th, 2016