A Tennessee college football player accused of fatally shooting his cheerleader girlfriend had allegedly asked friends to hide the gun used in the murder.
According to the Knoxville News Sentinel, a court learned Thursday that William Riley Gaul, 19, had reached out to friends a day after girlfriend Emma Walker’s death and asked them if they could hide the weapon and lie to police. All the while, Gaul allegedly claimed that he had no involvement in Walker’s death.
“I’m trusting you guys with my life because this is 70 years in jail if I’m convicted of something I didn’t do,” Gaul reportedly said during a secret recording, taped at the request of police.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, Gaul is believed to have gone to Walker’s home on November 22 and shot her through her bedroom window using his grandfather’s gun.
Reports indicated that the pair met at Central High School in Knoxville, Tennessee, and continued their relationship when Gaul attended Maryville College, where he played football as a wide receiver.
Walker reportedly broke up with her football player boyfriend a mere week before she was shot and killed.
According to WATE, friends managed to record Gaul’s damning admissions using a wire and body camera provided to them by the Knoxville County Sheriff’s Office. The News Sentinel reported that friends reached out to law enforcement after having suspicions about Gaul’s involvement in Walker’s murder—specifically that he previously admitted to stealing his grandfather’s gun.
In one of the videos, Gaul is allegedly heard saying, “I had the gun because I was scared.”
The newspaper reported that Gaul asked his friends to accompany him to the Tennessee River to dump the gun. Police arrested the teen as they arrived and he allegedly showed his friends the murder weapon.
Gaul was allegedly recorded saying, “If I throw it with enough force, if it’s in the Tennessee River, they will never find it.”
Gaul is charged with first-degree murder and especially aggravated stalking. His trial is expected to reconvene Monday.
[Featured Image: William Riley Gaul/Knox County Sheriff’s Office; Emma Jean Walker/YouCaring.com]