Houston & Peach

Woman pleads guilty to helping clean up crime scene of two slayings

Amy Patricia Walker
Amy Patricia Walker

A former Macon woman has pleaded guilty for helping clean up the crime scene of a double homicide at a rented Houston County home in 2013.

Amy Patricia Walker, 21, who most recently has been living in Riverdale, pleaded guilty Monday to two counts of concealing the deaths and one count of tampering with evidence, according to Houston County Superior Court records. She had been free on a $10,000 bond pending trial.

Judge George Nunn sentenced Walker to three years in prison and seven years on probation. She was also granted first offender status, which means her felony record essentially will be wiped clean if she successfully completes the terms of her probation.

Her plea agreement included her testimony against 24-year-old Cole Crouch of Warner Robins, who was convicted earlier this month of murder for orchestrating the slaying of his drug supplier over a $15,000 drug debt he did not want to pay. He was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole.

According to testimony at trial, Crouch enlisted his close friend Tom Kelley to shoot Ruben Miranda, 32, who supplied Crouch with marijuana and methamphetamine for resale. Miranda’s friend, Shaland McConnell, 30, who came along with Miranda, also was shot to death in the living room of the Chadwick Road home.

Kelley and his fiancee at the time, Kristen Beuthin, testified that they bought a tarp at Crouch’s direction for “easy cleanup” of a killing. Kelley testified that Miranda was standing on the tarp when he shot him first in the chest and then in the back of the head. Kelley shot McConnell in the head while he was sitting on the couch.

Kristen Beuthin, who is serving a 12-year sentence for helping conceal the bodies of two men slain in Houston County and cleanup the crime scene, testifies at the trial of Cole Crouch. He is on trial for murder and related charges.

Crouch, Kelley and another friend, Justice Evans, loaded the bodies into Kelley’s yellow pickup, and Kelley drove the bodies to a heavily wooded area in Vinson Valley that his family owned. Evans and Crouch met him there, and the three men dragged the bodies into the woods and covered them with the tarp.

Beuthin and Walker, who was dating Evans in 2013, testified that they helped clean up the crime scene.

Walker was the only co-defendant who was never indicted on murder charges in connection with the slayings. Evans testified that Crouch had invited him over to his house, but he had no idea that a killing had been planned. He brought Walker with him.

Walker testified that she purchased bleach from a Kroger after the slaying and helped clean up the crime scene. She also said she had flushed shell casings down the toilet. Jurors watched a surveillance video of her during Crouch’s trial buying the bleach.

The murder charges against Evans and Beuthin were dismissed as part of their plea agreements that included their testimony. Evans was sentenced to 10 years in prison, and Beuthin was sentenced to 12 years in prison. Kelley was sentenced to life for the murders plus 10 years for concealing the deaths. His plea agreement included the possibility of parole, according to court testimony.

Becky Purser: 478-256-9559, @BecPurser