Trial starts for ex-college player facing murder charge in Tennessee

Associated Press • May 1, 2018 at 3:57 PM

KNOXVILLE — A former Division III football player is on trial in Tennessee and facing a first-degree murder charge in connection with the fatal shooting of a high school cheerleader who also was his former girlfriend.

Former Maryville wide receiver William Riley Gaul is on trial the death of Emma Walker, a 16-year-old from Knoxville. Opening statements took place Tuesday morning.

Walker was found dead Nov. 21, 2016. Gaul is charged with firing shots into Walker’s bedroom from outside her home while she was sleeping.

Knox County Assistant District Attorney Kevin Allen calls Gaul a “premeditated cold-hearted killer” who was angry over the end of his tumultuous two-year relationship with Walker. Gaul’s lawyer, Wesley Stone, says Gaul never meant to kill Walker and therefore isn’t guilty of first-degree murder.

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