It didn't take long to track him down. Haverhill, Bath, and Woodsville are small towns. Everyone knows everybody. I was directed to a property on Bradley Hill Road, about a mile from where Maura got into her accident. Williams' house is a mansion, with a gigantic barn/garage he built himself, topped with an ornamental golden cow. Not bad digs for a former public servant.
When I knocked, Williams opened the door only a little but it was enough for me to get a sense of his size. He's a big man. Intimidating. Ruggedly handsome. And pissed off. When I told him I was a reporter, he slammed the door in my face. I went to his car and began to write a note, so that I could leave my contact information. At that point, he opened the door and shouted at me to leave his property, "before I kick your ass." I obliged.
It was an odd response from a former chief of police. But after speaking to neighbors, I learned that Williams has gone through a bit of a rough patch over the last couple years and has reason to fear the media.
His troubles began in April of 2009, when he wrecked his Harley when he collided with a pick up truck in Woodsville. And then, on July 24, a Haverhill cop spotted a car speeding along Rt. 10. The car tried to get away. The cop gave chase. Eventually, the car pulled over near the Bath line on Swiftwater Rd. The driver was Jeff Williams. He was charged with DWI and disobeying a police officer and that was the end of his career.
The car he was driving was not his own. There's been a lot of talk about who it belonged to. A woman who was not his wife. But let's not get into gossip.
Fred Murray was perhaps the first one to call out Williams' character. He believed Williams' intentionally mislead newspaper reporters about how intoxicated Maura appeared after the crash.