Mrs. Uloma Curry-Walker has been found guilty of aggravated murder, conspiracy, felonious assault and other charges in the Nov. 3, 2013 slaying of her then-husband of four months, William Walker. The wife of the Cleveland firefighter was convicted Friday of soliciting his death to collect on insurance money. Little did she know, her husband had not finalized switching his life insurance policy into her name from the name of his ex-wife, who actually got the payout in the months after Walker’s death! In case you’re wondering, yes, she kept the money.
Prosecutors said Curry-Walker had run tens of thousands of dollars into debt through credit cards and loans, some of which she had taken out in Walker’s name. As she sunk nearer and nearer to financial ruin, prosecutors said, she plotted her husband’s death to collect on his $100,000 life insurance policy. The couple had just bought a house in Madison Township and were packing up their Lampson Road house to move the night he was killed.
She used her 17 year old daughter as an accomplice
Curry-Walker paid about a $1,000 down payment to her daughter’s boyfriend (and her child’s father), Chad Padgett, who went to his cousin, Chris Hein. After an initial failed attempt at Walker’s life in October, Hein reached out to Ryan Dorty to carry out the killing. All four, including Curry-Walker’s daughter, pleaded guilty, testified against her at trial and said the plot began with Uloma Curry-Walker. Her daughter, who was 17 years old at the time of the killing, testified that she was riding in a car with Curry-Walker and Padgett when her mother first brought up the plot. Curry-Walker told Padgett to have the shooter pull Walker’s pocket out of his pants, to make the killing look like a botched robbery, the daughter testified.
The daughter also said her mother told her that “no one would believe I would hire a bunch of kids to kill someone when I know people that could.”
Curry-Walker showed no emotion as her daughter pinned the plot on her.
The night of the incident
Curry-Walker sent her husband out to get McDonald’s at 8:30pm. Cellphone records show that she, her daughter and Hein placed several phone calls and text messages in the minutes leading up to the killing. Padgett and Dorty went with another man to the house and Dorty waited near the garage with a pistol that Hein had gotten.
When Walker came back home, Dorty ambushed him and shot him four times as he was unlocking the side door near the driveway. Walker’s keys were still in the door, prosecutors said. Curry-Walker placed a frantic 911 call at 8:35 p.m. to report her husband had been shot in the driveway. Jurors were shown a photograph of the blood-soaked white T-shirt that Walker was wearing when he was killed. Curry-Walker had no blood on her.
The Prosecution asked, “is it reasonable to expect that a loving wife is going to be there cradling her fatally shot husband?”
Trial testimony showed that Curry-Walker left her husband’s ashes in a drawer in an apartment, and her daughter’s father turned them over to police.
The dominos started to fall. First investigators arrested Dorty. Then as police closed in on the conspiracy, her own daughter flipped and agreed to testify against everyone, including her mother and Padgett, with whom she had an infant at the time.
Curry-Walker penned a confession letter the day before she turned herself in to police, in which she said she killed Walker because he was abusive. That was proven to be a lie.
In a final desperate attempt and a two hour closing statement, Curry-Walker’s attorney suggested that Curry-Walker’s daughter had actually cooked up the plan.
Curry-Walker cried as the guilty verdict was read and she was placed her in handcuffs. It was the first sign of emotion the 45-year-old showed throughout two weeks of testimony.
Hein, Padgett and Dorty are all set to be sentenced after Curry-Walker. As part of their deals with prosecutors, they agreed to serve 18 years, 28 years and 23 years to life in prison, respectively. Prosecutors agreed not to seek adult charges against the daughter, who is set to spend a month in juvenile detention this fall.
Jurors reached their verdict after deliberating for less than two hours.
Curry-Walker now faces a maximum of life in prison without the possibility of parole. She will be sentenced on Aug. 8.
Friday would have been the couple’s 4-year anniversary.
Info via Cleveland.com