Teen convicted in quadruple murder case to be transferred to adult prison
KANAWHA COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) - A teenager serving 10 years in prison for her role in the murder of four members of the same family will spend the rest of her sentence in an adult prison facility.
Until Tuesday’s ruling, Rebecca Walker has been housed at the Lakin Correctional Center.
Walker was 17 at the time of her sentencing. In September of 2021, Walker took a plea agreement, pleading guilty to four counts of accessory after the fact to first-degree murder.
Under West Virginia State law, once a person becomes 18 years of age, they must be transferred to an adult facility.
Tuesday, Walker’s lawyer asked if she could remain at the correctional center, stating that Walker is maintaining a 3.3 GPA in her effort to obtain her diploma and is getting therapy help.
“These events happened in a time in her life when she had just lost her mother. She latched onto her boyfriend and confided in him and believed his stories and ultimately participated in her role in these crimes,” Walker’s attorney, Robbie Long said.
“Rebecca and Mr. Smith talked about this crime before it occurred,” Assistant Prosecutor, Don Morris said. “The time of the crime was picked because the grandmother of Miss Walker was going to be out of town and they were going to have a chance to spend several days together.”
Walker pleaded guilty to accessory after the fact to murder.
Her boyfriend, Gavin Smith, has been charged with killing four members of his family, his mother, stepfather and two siblings, investigators say.
Daniel Dale Long, 37, Risa Mae Saunders, 39, Gage Ripley, 12, and Jameson Long, 3 were found dead in December 2020 at a home in the 1300 block of Cemetery Hill Drive in Elkview.
According to a Kanawha County Circuit Court order, after the murders Smith was found hiding behind a dresser in a third-floor room of a home along River Haven Road in Clendenin. The order states that several articles of clothing were found on or near the suspect. Some tested positive for the presence of blood, and the blood matched the two juvenile victims.
According to the order, there was probable cause and sufficient evidence to transfer Smith’s case to adult status.
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