ABILENE, TX – Police have arrested and charged two people suspected of killing an Abilene police officer.
Phillip Walter, 29, and Violetta Walter, 30, were linked to stolen property taken from officer Don Allen’s home.
Shortly after 6 p.m., the Texas Rangers and officers with APD arrested the couple at a south Abilene apartment complex with arrest warrants obtained by the Texas Rangers. Both suspects were charged with first-degree felony murder, which carries confinement from 5-99 years, or life in prison.
Their bond has been set at $500,000 each.
The Abilene Police Chief said it will be up to the Texas Rangers and the District Attorney as to whether they pursue capital murder charges.
The police chief said the department is confident they have taken the correct people into custody and do not believe there are other suspects.
The alleged killers have three children and according to the police, the husband, Phillip Walter, has a history of crime. There is nothing in their social media that would specifically link them to Black Lives Matter or any radical groups. The police have said this was a premeditated murder in the officers home, making this then a very unusual case, yet the police haven’t explained the motive in this case. There was a report that the officer had been tortured and anti-cop slurs written on the wall in his home, however the police have denied that.
According to Big Country:
Recovered items include a Tazer, baton, two pairs of handcuffs, a clipboard, and an old badge.
Items still missing include a Glock 22 .40-calibur handgun, duty belt, can of O.C. spray (pepper spray), flashlight, and a Harris brand police radio. Sgt. Beard says the radio was remotely disabled when it was discovered missing.
Information from an APD tip line and emails from citizens helped police determine that both suspects were selling multiple items from home and attempting to sell some of the police-duty items which are still missing.
Sgt. Beard says police do not believe that the people who purchased these items know that the property belonged to APD, and he encourages anyone who may have purchased one of these items on or after August 31 or had contact with the suspects to come forward.
Investigators are prepared to arrange for the safe return of the items “in a manner that’s beneficial to everyone,” Beard said.