MAN FOUND NOT GUILTY BY REASON OF MENTAL ILLNESS FOR PARENTS MURDER
News 9 - September 29, 2023 6:55 am
OKLAHOMA CITY –
A metro family has waited four and a half years for closure in a double murder case. Prosecutors charged Elijah Walker, 24, with two counts of murder for the 2019 killing his parents inside their Edmond home. Walker pleaded not guilty by reason of mental illness on Thursday in an Oklahoma County courtroom.
Walker’s family said they knew mental illness played a role in the murders. From the beginning, they wanted Walker to receive long-term treatment rather than spend life in prison.
“Today is a big day,” said Ashten West, Elijah Walker’s sister. “1,669 days that how long we’ve been waiting for this. That’s how long it’s been since the death of our parents.”
Walker was still a teenager when he was charged for the murders of parents Michael and Rachel Walker. Walker shot and killed his parents believing they were sending him telepathic messages and worshipping Satan. He faced an additional charge of having explosive devices. A psychologist found Walker was not competent at the time of the murders.
“These are difficult cases, but the right thing happened and I knew I was on the right side of this,” said Derek Chance, Elijah Walker’s attorney. “I knew mom and dad would have wanted him to get treatment. In fact, that’s why he was in the house in the first place when this took place. Mom thought she could take better care of him than anyone else.”
Walker’s attorney Derek Chance has been with him through the four and a half years. Chance told the court on Thursday Walker was now competent and understood the charges but needed continued treatment. Walker pleaded not guilty by reason of mental illness.
“An agreed order has been signed placing my brother Elijah into the custody of Eastern Oklahoma State where he will receive proper treatment and he will live,” said West.
Walker was escorted back to the county jail following the hearing to await transfer to the facility in Vinita. When asked if he was glad the case was over, Walker replied, “Yeah.”
Walker’s attorney said they waived a 45-day review to determine if Walker is a present danger to himself or others. Walker can only be released from state custody with a judge’s ruling.