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An argument involving a previous drug arrest in Cheektowaga might have provoked the fatal stabbing of Buffalo resident Michael A. Ballard Jr. last weekend, authorities said.
Homicide detectives returned from Cleveland this afternoon with Anthony “Tone-Tone” Williams, the alleged killer who was intercepted there at about 2:30 p.m. Sunday on his way to Las Vegas.
“Williams, Ballard and Ballard’s brother were arrested a month ago by Cheektowaga police on narcotics charges, and we think that might have started a minor argument that led to the stabbing,” a law enforcement official said late Friday.
Initially, homicide investigators obtained only a nickname, “Tone-Tone,” for the stabbing suspect when they responded to the scene of the killing at about 11:30 p.m. Oct. 5 in the 500 block of Woodlawn Avenue by Humboldt Parkway.
But police officials said witnesses provided Williams’ full name and that the 25-year-old had fled Buffalo on a bus bound for Las Vegas.
Further investigation determined the bus was stopping in Cleveland, and homicide detectives called police in that city who nabbed him at the Greyhound bus station.
Anonymous tipsters, police said, also played a role in providing crucial information that pointed homicide investigators to Williams.
Detective Sgt. James P. Lonergan and Detectives James Lima, Reginald Minor and Salvatore Valvo were credited with solving the case.
Williams was brought back to Buffalo by Homicide Detectives Brian Ross and Scott Malec.
Williams has been charged with second-degree murder.

email: lmichel@buffnews.com