DNA slow coming in Walker murders

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Posted: Thursday, May 30, 2013 6:35 pm | Updated: 9:25 pm, Wed Sep 18, 2013.

SARASOTA COUNTY, Fla. - The Walker Family murders took place more than 50 years ago in Osprey. It was hoped recent DNA tests linking two potential suspects would be back by now. So far, results have been inconclusive as those who lived through it still wait.

Don McLeod says he can remember every detail of December 19th, 1959 as if it was yesterday.  It was a day he and his friend Cliff Walker were supposed to go hunting. "I told him I would be down there about five o'clock in the morning."

What he saw he says was a gruesome scene. 25-year old Cliff Walker, with his 24-year old wife Christine, along with their three year old son Jimmie and nearly two year old daughter Debbie, all murdered. "I knew they were dead. He was shot right there under the eye with a .22. They had shot her in the top of the head."

Since then he and many more have toiled over would do such a thing and why? "I have wondered many a day and night of wondering who done it and what for? They didn't have two dollars."

Then in 2012 the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office and a detective assigned to the case began looking into two possible suspects: Perry Smith and Richard Hickock.  Both were convicted and executed for the 1959 murders of the Clutter family in Holcomb, Kansas. Those murders were documented in the book "In Cold Blood" by Truman Capote.

Sealed information has detectives believing it's the men responsible. "It provides a great level of detail as to why she believes they are the suspects. However, we have to wait for the science to confirm that or send us in a different direction," says Sheriff's spokesperson Wendy Rose.

DNA evidence was collected from the exhumed bodies months ago. It was thought an answer would have come by now. So far though it has been inconclusive. "At this point there is a partial profile. Almost complete profile of one of the suspects. We are still having difficulty with the full profile of the other suspect."

Don says he doesn't have much faith. "I don't have much hope on it. I have been fooled so many many many times. Oh this one done it, oh that one done it."

At one point he says authorities thought he may have done it, but no more. He was cleared with DNA evidence.

For now he's holding out hope of hearing any day now who for sure did. "I would be ready to be put six foot under. If they got the right one and I knew they were the ones."

Authorities say they have good DNA from the scene all those years ago. Able to clear the up to 30 suspects they've had over the years. Now just looking for a match. More tests are being done and now redone on those two suspects.

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