Wednesday, December 6, 2017
Two previously convicted felons are being sought on first-degree murder charges for the death of a local man whose body was found dumped at Greenwood Cemetery in October after he was shot to death, beaten and stabbed, Hot Springs police said Tuesday.
John Patrick Walker, 42, and Donald Franklin Williams, 55, are also being sought on felony charges of possession of a firearm by certain persons in connection with the death of Cory Richardson, 31, whose body was found Oct. 23 next to the cemetery's main entrance at 701 Greenwood Ave.
If convicted, Walker and Williams could face up to life in prison on the murder charge. Both are known to have family and friends in the Mountain Pine, Fountain Lake and Jessieville areas of Garland County, police said in a "Be On the Lookout" release posted Tuesday.
The post also notes, "Aiding and abetting these wanted persons in their effort to avoid law enforcement is a class B felony which carries a penalty of no less than 5 years and up to 20 years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections upon conviction." Anyone with information on the whereabouts of the suspects is asked to contact Detective Scott Lampinen at 321-6789, ext. 6741.
Police have arrested five other suspects on various charges in connection with the death of Richardson. An autopsy determined Richardson died as the result of a gunshot entering his upper left buttocks and exiting his abdomen. There was also evidence of post mortem injuries, including blunt force trauma to his head and a stab wound to his left thigh.
On Nov. 15, police arrested Steven Wood, 42, of Hot Springs, on a felony charge of first-degree murder. Stephanie Shell, 21, of Malvern, was arrested at the same time and charged with hindering apprehension or prosecution, punishable by up to 20 years.
Melissa J. Wineland, 37, of Hot Springs, was arrested Oct. 24, Jake L. Norwood, 28, of Hot Springs, was arrested Nov. 5 and James Dean Keyser, 27, of Hot Springs, was arrested Nov. 24 and each charged with tampering with physical evidence, a felony punishable by up to six years in prison, for their alleged part in disposing of the body and covering up the crime.
According to previous affidavits, Richardson was killed or severely wounded at 106 N. Patterson St., Wineland's residence, and transported by car to the cemetery. The car was located and searched the day Richardson was found and reportedly had a large amount of blood in the back seat. Fresh blood was also found at the Patterson Street residence.
After Wineland's arrest, she was questioned and allegedly stated she and Keyser took Richardson's body from the house to the cemetery after other suspects caused his injuries.
Wineland reportedly said sometime during the afternoon of Oct. 22, Richardson used a counterfeit $100 bill to pay Wood for meth, which Wood got from Wineland's boyfriend, identified as Williams.
Later that same day, Williams allegedly arrived at her house, angry at Wood for accepting the counterfeit bill, and told Wood to locate Richardson and "deal with it," and then left.
Wineland said she borrowed a friend's car to run some errands and left the house. Shortly after 3 a.m., she said Williams called her and said Richardson had been shot at her house and she needed to get there to "clean up the mess." When she arrived, Wood and Keyser reportedly loaded Richardson into the car.
On Nov. 6, another witness came forward and alleged Williams and his son-in-law, identified as Walker, came to Wineland's residence around 3 a.m. armed with handguns and pistol whipped Richardson, knocking him to the floor.
Wood allegedly jumped up and also began hitting Richardson, who fought his way to his feet and ran toward the kitchen, attempting to make it to the back door. At that time, Williams allegedly raised his gun and shot in Richardson's direction.
Williams and Walker were reportedly the only ones in the kitchen with Richardson at the time, and continued to beat him before a second shot was fired. The witness said Richardson was lying face down on the floor, yelling that he had been shot as Williams and Walker exited the kitchen.
Williams allegedly began cleaning blood off his hands and the gun, then he looked to the witness and Keyser and reportedly said, "y'all better clean this mess up," as he and Walker left the scene.
Local on 12/06/2017
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