Execution set for Walker

Tuesday, November 23rd 1999, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals on Tuesday set a Jan. 13 execution date for five-time killer Gary Alan Walker.

The court acted on a motion from Attorney General Drew Edmondson, who requested the execution be set after the U.S. Supreme Court refused earlier this month to hear a last-ditch appeal by Walker.

Walker, 46, was convicted and sentenced to death for the 1984 murders of both Eddie Cash, 63, of Broken Arrow and Tulsa radio newswoman Valerie Shaw-Hartzell, 25. But he was retried in 1991 and received a life sentence without parole, plus 500 years for kidnapping, in the Shaw-Hartzell case. It is for Cash's murder that Walker faces execution.

The condemned man also confessed to the 1984 killings of Jane Hilburn of Vinita, Janet Jewell of Tulsa and Margaret Bell Lydick of Poteau.

He ultimately received a total of one death sentence, five life terms and 530 years for crimes he committed in 1984.

Cash was killed after he gave a hitchhiker a ride to Owasso on May 6, 1984. Authorities say Walker learned where Cash lived and traveled back to the victim's home in Broken Arrow that night. He killed Cash by striking him several times in the head with a brick and strangling him with a vacuum cleaner cord.

Three other inmates are scheduled for execution in the next two months -- Cornel Cooks on Dec. 2, Bobby Lynn Ross on Dec. 9 and Malcolm Rent Johnson on Jan. 6.

Cooks was convicted in the 1982 slaying of Jennie Ridling, a disabled 87-year-old Lawton woman. Ross was sentenced to death for the 1983 murder of 30-year-old Elk City police officer Steven Mahan. Johnson was convicted of the 1981 rape and murder of Ura Alma Thompson at her Oklahoma City apartment.