Murder victim was set to testify

Published: Jul. 1, 2010 at 9:54 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 2, 2010 at 10:58 PM CDT
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By Courtney Lane - bio | email

SMITH COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - Smith County authorities may know who killed Cherry Diane Walker and why.

Walker's body was discovered along a Smith County road nearly two weeks ago. Now, search warrant affidavits indicate authorities believe 43-year-old Kimberly Cargill of Whitehouse may have killed Walker to stop her testifying in court.

Cargill is facing a felony "injury to a child" charge regarding her 4-year old son and KLTV 7 learned Cherry Walker babysat that little boy, though her parents begged her not to.

Cherry Walker suffered from a mental disability. Her step-mom Rueon Walker says she had the mind of a child but a heart of gold and babysitting Kim Cargill's little boy was the joy of her life.

"Of actually doing something constructive," said Rueon. "She would take her food stamp money, make sure that he would have food so she could feed him when she came. She really loved him."

But Rueon says Cargill took advantage, "She wouldn't pay her," Rueon said. "Half the time she wouldn't pay her and then sometimes she would leave him overnight and she would give her $20, "and I said 'Cherry why do you do it?' And she said it's Luke'."

In March, Cargill was arrested for injury to a child but posted bond the next day. Court records show Cherry was subpoenaed to testify in Cargill's custody hearing June 23rd. But Cargill told her not to and that she would "hide her out at her house."

After Cherry's body was found, affidavits show investigators raided Cargill's Whitehouse home and vehicle finding some of cherry's belongings.

"She was so helpless," said Rueon, "I know she was just helpless. She had no control on what they did to her."

Cargill has not been named a suspect but court records say investigators believe she did intentionally take the life of Cherry Walker, in retaliation, to prevent or delay her serving as a witness.

"Even if she had to testify or whatever, she wouldn't have known," said Rueon. "In her mind she was a child. She was, God she was a child."

The Walkers are rooted in their faith and know Cherry is in her heavenly home. But they're still struggling with one question.

"How could anyone take such innocence, that's what I want to say, such innocence and be so violent, so mean, so evil?"

If you'd like to help the Walker family, a fund has been set up at all South Side Bank locations. It's under Cherry Walker's name.

Smith County investigators say they are not commenting on this case until their investigation is complete.

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