William was one of six activists arrested December 7, 2005 as part of the FBI’s Operation Backfire. He was charged with one count of arson for a June 1998 fire set by the ELF at the National Wildlife Research Center in Olympia, Washington. He was found dead in his jail cell on December 21, 2005. According to police, William committed suicide using a plastic bag.
Before his death he mailed the following note to friends and supporters: “Certain human cultures have been waging war against the Earth for millennia. I chose to fight on the side of bears, mountain lions, skunks, bats, saguaros, cliff rose and all things wild. I am just the most recent casualty in that war. But tonight I have made a jail break—I am returning home, to the Earth, to the place of my origins. Bill, 12/21/05 (the winter solstice.)”
William has had a continuing impact on liberation movements and a number of acts have been dedicated to his memory. Among these have been the removal of 28 beagle puppies from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine at the Independent University of Madrid.
Rest in Power, Avalon!
Read about the Madrid action here…