Newlywed woman found guilty of hiring a hit man to kill her husband just four months into their marriage in Cleveland, Ohio in Nov 2013
She counted on collecting his $100,000 life insurance policy
45-year-old Uloma Curry-Walker could be sentenced to life in prison without parole for the assassination of Cleveland Fire Lt. William Walker
Curry-Walker, then 42, wed William Walker, 45, just four months before sending her then 17-year-old daughter, and her 20-year-old boyfriend, Chad Padgett, to find someone to kill her husband
Curry-Walker was nearing financial ruin after running up tens of thousands of dollars in debt
After the deed she found out William Walker was yet to change the beneficiary on the policy from his ex-wife’s name to Curry-Walker’s
After the defendant gave Padgett, a $1,000 down payment he contracted his cousin Christopher Hein for the hit
Hein failed in his attempt but in turn got Ryan Dorty who ambushed Walker, fatally shooting him four times as he returned home from getting fast food Curry-Walker had requested
Curry-Walker’s daughter, now 20, Padgett, 23, Hein, 24, and 25-year-old Dorty testified against her in exchange for the plea deal for their roles in the murder conspiracy
The widow was convicted of aggravated murder, July 7, for buying the hit on her husband, William Walker
Hein was sentenced 18 years to life; Padgett 28 years to life, and the shooter Dorty received a sentence of 23 years to life
Uloma Curry-Walker was convicted of aggravated murder on July 7 for hiring a hit man to killer her husband, William Walker, in November 2013
A newlywed accused of soliciting her firefighter husband’s killing to collect $100,000 in insurance money has been convicted of aggravated murder in a scheme that was flawed from the start: His ex-wife was still the beneficiary of his policy.
Uloma Curry-Walker, 45, could spend the rest of her life behind bars for her role in the death of her husband.
Jurors deliberated for less than two hours before coming back with the verdict Friday, Cleveland.com reported.
The motive prosecutors said was that the newlywed Curry-Walker had run tens of thousands of dollars into debt through credit cards and loans, some of which she had taken out in Walker’s name.
As she sunk deeper into financial ruin, prosecutors said, she plotted Walker’s death to collect on his $100,000 life insurance policy.
She asked her then-17-year-old daughter and the daughter’s boyfriend to find someone to kill her husband so she could collect the insurance money.
Convicted: Uloma Curry-Walker is handcuffed Friday after a jury found her guilty of aggravated murder and conspiracy charges in the Nov. 3, 2013 murder of her husband, William Walker
Jurors reached their verdict after deliberating for less than two hours, meaning that Curry-Walker could receive the maximum sentence of life in prison without parole for the November 2013 slaying of Cleveland fire lieutenant William Walker, whom she had married just four months earlier.
William Walker was ambushed and shot by a hitman hired by his wife of only 4 months while on an errand she had sent him
Her husband had not yet changed the beneficiary on the insurance policy from his ex-wife’s name to Curry-Walker’s when he was killed, so it was the ex-wife who received the money.
Testimony showed that Curry-Walker gave the boyfriend, Chad Padgett, then 20, a $1,000 down payment to carry out the slaying.
Padgett contacted his cousin Chris Hein, who initially failed in his attempt to kill Walker.
Newlywed Curry-Walker asked her teen daughter [right] and the daughter’s boyfriend, Chad Padgett [leftt], a $1,000 down payment to find someone to kill her new husband so she could collect the insurance money
After an initial failed attempt at Walker’s life in October, Hein, 24, reached out to Ryan Dorty, to execute the contract.
Prosecutors said 25-year-old Dorty ambushed Walker and shot him four times as he returned home from getting fast food Curry-Walker had requested.
She and her husband were packing the night he was killed for a move to a house they had purchased outside Cleveland.
The daughter, Padgett, Hein and Dorty testified against Curry-Walker at trial as part of plea deal for their roles in the murder conspiracy.
Hein agreed to a sentence of 18 years to life, Padgett 28 years to life.
The shooter Dorty, who was sentenced to a 15-year in prison term in 2014 for an unrelated aggravated robbery will be sentenced to serve 23 years to life.
Christopher Hein [left], who initially was contracted by his cousin Padgett for the hit, failed in his attempt to kill Walker. Hein then got to Ryan Dorty [right], who prosecutors say ambushed and shot the victim four times
Prosecutors agreed not to seek adult charges against Curry-Walker’s daughter. She will instead spend a month in a juvenile detention center.
The daughter testified at trial that her mother told her: ‘No one would believe I would hire a bunch of kids to kill someone when I know people that could.’
Curry-Walker wrote a confession the day she surrendered to police that said she killed her husband because he was abusive.
Curry-Walker’s attorneys did not call any witnesses to testify that Walker was violent toward his wife. Instead one of attorneys pointed to discrepancies in witness testimony during closing arguments and suggested the daughter had devised the murder scheme.
The co-conspirators turned witnesses, all said Curry-Walker sent her husband out to get food from McDonald’s for her about 8:30, prosecutors said. Cellphone records show that she, her daughter and Chris Hein exchanged several phone calls and text messages in the minutes leading up to the shooting.
Padgett and Dorty went with another man to the house and Dorty waited near the garage with a pistol that Hein had acquired.
When Walker came back home, Dorty ambushed him and shot him four times as he was unlocking the side door near the driveway. Walker’s keys were still in the door, prosecutors said.
To hide her role in the plot, Curry-Walker placed a frantic 911 call at 8:35 p.m. to report her husband had been shot in the driveway.
Her daughter who is now 20, testified that she was riding in a car with Curry-Walker and Padgett when her mother first brought up the plot. She told Padgett to have the shooter pull Walker’s pocket out of his pants, to make the killing look like a botched robbery, the daughter testified.
Sentencing is scheduled for Aug. 8.
July 7 would have been the couple’s fourth wedding anniversary.