– The first black sheriff in the history of St. Helena Parish has taken his oath of office.
Nathaniel “Nat” Williams was the chief criminal deputy under former Sheriff Ronald “Gun” Ficklin before becoming sheriff. He was sworn-in during ceremonies on Friday.
Ficklin resigned as sheriff after pleading guilty to 17 federal counts last year. He admitted that he worked with a stolen car “chop shop” and had state prisoners housed in the parish jail work there and as his personal race car pit crew.
Ficklin is serving a 63-month prison sentence.
Williams, who started his law enforcement career as a dispatcher, was elected with 51.6% of the vote in the October primary against four other candidates.
He becomes the parish’s eighth sheriff.