Rogers, AR – She’d had enough, she told deputies, and she just wasn’t gonna take it anymore.Â It was either him, or her.Â That’s why Myrtle Marie Walter, 75, said she murdered her husband on Friday night.Â Myrtle shot Paul Walter, 74, three times while he was sleeping.Â Â He was pronounced dead at 2:35 a.m. on Saturday, and Myrtle Walter pronounced herself “sorry (she) had to do it, but relieved he’s gone”.Â I guess divorce was out of the question.
Friday nights in Benton County, Arkansas are just not all that exciting.Â In fact, this is only the second homicide this year in the area, and it’s October.Â Generally Friday nights are for knocking back a few beers, playing some cards with friends, maybe heading over to Oklahoma to play some bingo if you’re feeling lucky.
Well, Paul Walter wanted to get lucky, and Myrtle Marie was not havin’ any.Â She was sick and damn tired of that man always trying to get a little when she didn’t want to, she said.Â And he was mentally abusive, too, she told deputies later.Â Paul and Myrtle had been drinking that evening.Â They’d gotten in a fight, and after a yelling match over Myrtle’s lack of libido, she took her last beer out onto the back porch to think.
And think she did.
According to statements Myrtle gave to Benton County deputies, she sat there and decided that it was either gonna be Paul, or her.Â Myrtle Marie Walter just couldn’t take it any more.Â Paul Walter was bigger.Â She figured that it had to end and end soon, or he was going to take her out.Â And Myrtle decided not to wait.
Myrtle crept into the couple’s bedroom, where she got out two handgun boxes.Â She then took the box that held the .357 revolver into the bathroom, made sure it was loaded and working, and went back to the bedroom, where Paul was snoring in bed, his back to his wife.
Walter shot her husband once, then two more times when she saw that he was moving. She then put the gun down on the bed and walked out of the room.Â After that, she waited awhile.
A little after two in the morning, Myrtle Walter called her daughters to let them know what she’d done. Her daughter Laura Tucker went to the home and found Myrtle sitting at a desk in the kitchen.Â Tucker called 911 and told them that her mother had “had an accident”, but she didn’t go in to see Paul Walter.Â It’s not clear whether Mr. Walter is Laura Tucker’s father, but either way, that’s a pretty telling failure to act.Â To my mind, the only reason not to check on a person who might be mortally wounded is if you hope he’s dead and you’re afraid to go look.
When police and paramedics arrived, Paul Walter was dead.Â His body had three bullet wounds – one graze to the face, and two more – one to his neck, and one to his shoulder.Â The likely murder weapon was right there on the bed, and Myrtle said she didn’t need a lawyer.Â She readily confessed her crime.
Cold blooded murder or the “he needed killing” defense?Â In Benton County, I’m gonna bet she may just pull this one off on a plea deal and avoid the death penalty. You put a 5’2″, 115 pound grandmother on the stand in northwest Arkansas and ask her to talk about being abused by her larger, stronger husband, and she might just walk.Â My prediction? She’ll plea it out and do some time rather than go to trial.
Myrtle Marie Walter has been charged with capital murder, a death penalty offense in Arkansas.Â She is being held in the Benton County Jail without bond.Tags: Arkansas, Domestic Violence, Mariticide, Murder, Shooting