(T-G Photo by Brian Mosely)
Testimony from a TBI agent shed some light on alleged events the morning of Aug. 8 -- the day 55-year-old Larry Walls Sr., was allegedly murdered at the hands of Sean Gearhardt, 20, and Jason Starrick, 25, of Antioch, who allegedly received a payment of $400 and instructions from Susan Walls, 54, and Dawn Walls, 27, the wife and daughter of the victim.
Susan and Dawn Walls are charged with criminal responsibility for the conduct of another to commit criminal homicide, while Gearhardt and Starrick face criminal homicide charges.
District Attorney General Robert Carter asked that General Sessions Court Judge Charles Rich allow no bond for the defendants, citing the risk to the public, also pointing out that two of the suspects have a previous criminal history.
The men allegedly killed Walls while the women were at a Chuck E. Cheese restaurant in Nashville. Gearhardt and Starrick were roommates with Dawn Walls in Antioch.
TBI criminal investigator Andrew Conn said he was called to the murder scene by Bedford County Sheriff Randall Boyce. Deputies found Walls in a bedroom of his home, following a call from his wife, who claimed she discovered the body.
Conn testified that following interviews with Susan, she gave a statement implicating herself in the alleged plot to kill her husband. Gearhardt and Starrick were allegedly paid with cash and a debt card used at a gas station in Antioch.
According to Conn's testimony, Starrick held the victim in a headlock while Gearhardt struck him with a tire iron. A statement from Starrick implicates Gearhardt in the slaying, Conn said.
Out of the $400 paid for the murder, $70 was paid up front to the pair on the morning of the murder so that items could be gathered to commit the crime, Conn testified.
(T-G Photo by Brian Mosely)
All four of the suspects have given written statements detailing their roles in the alleged plot to kill Walls, Conn explained.
Under cross-examination by Chris Westmoreland, who represents Susan Walls, Conn said that she was upset when interviewed, but appeared to have no bruises on her.
Conn testified that Susan had not been read her Miranda rights, but she had not been in custody when she made the incriminating statements to authorities.
Dawn Walls was weeping when she entered the courtroom and her mother Susan will undergo a competency and mental evaluation by state doctors at Centerstone in Tullahoma.
Gearthardt and Susan Walls have no criminal history, while Dawn had previous convictions in Rutherford County, and Starrick has a much longer criminal history, all in different counties around Tennessee.
After the TBI agent made his testimony, Carter said that "the risk to the community is clear," asking that no bond be granted, while defense attorneys representing the four requested a bond of $100,000.
Rich said that the case before him was a "cold blooded murder, first degree murder," adding that it was "quite cheap at that" given the amount of money allegedly paid for the slaying.
Rich said that in the interest of the public, he was setting bond at $1 million for each defendant. Future court dates in the case have yet to be set.
Carter stated last month that as the investigation into the case proceeds, charges could be changed from criminal homicide to first degree murder or other related counts.