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Man charged in toddler's death

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif., Aug. 18 -- A 26-year-old man has been charged with shooting to death a toddler who was riding in the back of his family's car in Hesperia just over a year ago. San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department officials say today they believe Alvie Utah Williams was riding in a blue Chevy Camaro when he fired shots at a car containing 2-year-old Robert Xavier James on Aug. 1, 1997.

Investigators say anonymous information provided by callers to the We-Tip crime hotline led them to focus on Williams, who's being held at Corcoran State Prison on an unrelated firearms conviction. Investigators haven't been able to find the car. Sheriff Gary Penrod said, 'I am very pleased to see a suspect identified and charged in this case. This was such a sad and senseless murder, and was a very difficult investigation.' Gov. Pete Wilson announced a $25,000 reward last month for information about James' killer, adding to a reward of more than $10,000 being offered by the city of Hesperia, local businesses and the public. ---

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Copyright 1998 by United Press International. All rights reserved. ---

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