Haunting Murder of Emma Walker at the Hands of Riley Gaul

Haunting Murder of Emma Walker at the Hands of Riley Gaul

By Erin Kelly | Reviewed by Cara Johnson

After 16-year-old Emma Walker broke up with her boyfriend Riley Gaul, he eventually grew enraged enough to kill her — then posted an RIP message on Twitter to cover his tracks.

After 16-year-old Emma Walker broke up with her boyfriend Riley Gaul, he eventually grew enraged enough to kill her — then posted an RIP message on Twitter to cover his tracks.

In 2016, 16-year-old Emma Walker seemed to be living her teenage dream. She was a cheerleader at Central High School in Knoxville, Tennessee, surrounded by loving friends, and even dated a boy on the football team. To see also : The Carolina Panthers hire Justine Lindsay, the NFL’s first openly transgender cheerleader. But that fall, everything came crashing down when she broke up with 18-year-old Riley Gaul—and he killed her for it.

Facebook/In memory of Emma Walker Emma Walker was just 16 years old when she was murdered by her ex-boyfriend Riley Gaul in November 2016.

Gaul and Walker had started dating two years earlier when Gaul was a junior and Walker a freshman. However, as their relationship progressed, Walker’s friends and family noticed that Galia was becoming increasingly controlling.

Not long after Gaul started college in 2016, Walker decided to end their relationship — but Gaul didn’t take it well. He took drastic measures to get Walker’s attention, including faking his own kidnapping.

Then, in the early morning hours of November 21, 2016, Gaul crept outside Walker’s home and fired two shots through her bedroom wall. Her mother found her dead the next morning, and she immediately told investigators that she suspected Gala. However, it wasn’t until two of Gal’s friends helped the police carry out a sting operation that the dissolute ex-boyfriend was brought to justice.

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Emma Walker And Riley Gaul’s Turbulent Teenage Relationship

Riley Gaul, a wide receiver on the Central High School football team, first caught Emma Walker’s eye when she started cheerleading during her freshman year. This may interest you : After the killing of Putin’s supporters, supporters of Russia’s war in Ukraine fear for survival. According to ABC News, he was not a “classic jock” but a fun, intelligent young man who loved to play video games and had a “geek” side.

Twitter/Emma Walker Riley Gaul was the hottie on the Central High School football team, while Emma Walker was the cheerleader.

Mark and Jill Walker, Emma’s parents, initially thought he was a perfect fit for their daughter. Jill said he was “very nice”, and Mark recalled that he “was a very nice young man, well mannered”.

But Walker’s friends and family soon began to realize that Gaul had a controlling side. Lauren Hutton, one of Walker’s classmates, said: “He became more possessive and clingy to her and wouldn’t let her do certain things.”

During the two years they dated, Gaul and Walker frequently broke up and got back together, often having “really dramatic” fights. At one point, Gaul sent her Snapchat messages that read, “I hate you, I hate everything about you” and “You’re dead to me… I’ll check the obituary… f*ck.”

When Walker’s parents saw these messages, they immediately banned Gaul from their home and confiscated their daughter’s cell phone, but Gaul gave her an iPod Touch so they could still stay in touch.

Twitter/Emma Walker Riley Gaul and Emma Walker before graduation in April 2016, just seven months before her murder.

Finally, around Halloween 2016, Walker ended things with Gali for good. Mark Walker noted, “She’s back to her old self. She would come out of her room, have dinner with us and hang out with us.”

Tragically, Emma Walker will only be able to enjoy her newfound freedom for a few short weeks before Gaul takes it from her forever.

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Riley Gaul’s Escalating Attempts To Get Emma Walker’s Attention

On November 18, 2016, just a few weeks after breaking up with Gali, Emma Walker attended a party at her friend’s house. According to the Knoxville News Sentinel, around 11:30 p.m. she received a text message from an anonymous number that read: “Go to the car with your keys. To see also : Teenage Montegut also works as a soccer player and cheerleader. Go alone… I have someone you love. If you don’t comply, I will hurt them.”

Walker suspected the texts were from her ex, so she and a group of her friends went outside — only to find Riley Gaul lying face down in a ditch. He claimed he was kidnapped and couldn’t remember anything because the captors hit him on the head, but Walker didn’t believe him and left.

The very next day, Walker saw a creepy stranger dressed in black outside his house. ABC News reports that she texted her friends: “I’m home alone and someone in black walked down my street, came to my door and rang the doorbell over and over. I thought I was going to die.”

Public DomainRiley Gaul is currently serving a life sentence for the murder of Emma Walker.

Terrified, she reached out to the only person she could think of at the moment – Riley Gaul. She told him, “I hate you, but I need you right now,” and he replied, “I’m coming… I’m running, just give me a minute.”

When Walker’s mother arrived home shortly afterward to find her daughter outside with Galli, she was furious. She asked him to leave and told Walker that the stranger in black had probably been Gal all along.

The next day, Sunday, November 20, Walker’s parents walked her to work and back home to make sure she was safe. Around 12 o’clock she went to bed – and that was the last time she was seen alive.

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Emma Walker’s Death And The Startling Investigation That Followed

At 6 a.m. on Monday, November 21, 2016, Jill Walker went into her daughter’s room to wake her up for school and found her unresponsive.

She immediately called the police, who rushed to the house to investigate. At first they believed Walker might have taken her life, but then they noticed a strange hole in her bedroom wall.

Knox County Sheriff’s Deputy Nikki Bules recalled to ABC News, “There was a hole in the wall… It appeared to be a bullet hole. At that moment I knew it was probably not suicide.”

Further investigation revealed another hole in the wall and two shell casings in the front yard. There was only a small amount of blood on Walker’s pillow, but it was clear that she had been fatally shot behind her left ear.

Another officer on the case, Lt. Allen Merritt, began interviewing friends and family members — and noticed the same name kept coming up over and over again. “Everybody was giving us the name Riley Gaul because of their relationship, because they saw the way Riley treated her, the way he talked to her,” Meritt said.

Meanwhile, Gaul has been busy creating Facebook and Twitter posts about Walker’s death. “Calm down now honey,” he wrote in one tweet. “I love you forever and always.”

Twitter/Riley Gaul Screenshot of Riley Gaul’s Twitter profile in the days after Emma Walker’s death.

Despite Gaul’s mournful messages, investigators quickly brought him in for questioning about Emma Walker’s death. Detective James Hurst told ABC News: “When I first met him, I thought he might be a grieving boy. When we walked into the interview room and sat down, I felt like there was a dark side. He didn’t have a lot of passion or care.”

Gaul told police Walker blocked his number the night she died after they had another argument over the phone and he cried in the car for two or three hours before going to bed. However, throughout, he never referred to Emma Walker by her name, referring only to her as “the girl”.

Although the interview was suspicious, police had no hard evidence they could use to charge Gaul with Walker’s murder – until two of his close friends came forward to help.

How Riley Gaul Was Charged With The Murder Of Emma Walker

Two of Riley Gaul’s college friends, Alex McCarty and Noah Walton, were quick to tell investigators that Gaul had shown some troubling behavior since his breakup with Walker.

Shortly after the relationship ended, Gaul took a handful of Vicodin and washed it down with alcohol in an apparent suicide attempt.

On Saturday, Nov. 19 — the day after Gaul’s alleged abduction — he told McCarty that he had stolen his grandfather’s gun to protect himself. He then asked Walton how to get his fingerprints off the gun, and he ended up asking both of his friends to help him get rid of the gun.

According to Oxygen, Gaul swore to friends he didn’t kill Walker, but wanted to throw the gun into the Tennessee River because he was worried police would unfairly link him to the crime if they found out he had it.

Truly Criminal/YouTubeAlex McCarty and Noah Watson agree to take part in a sting operation to uncover the truth about Emma Walker’s death.

Suspicious of Gaul’s true motives, McCarty and Walton team up with investigators to uncover the truth. They were equipped with cameras and microphones as they followed Gal to throw the gun he used to kill Walker.

Thanks to McCarty and Walton, the police swooped in in time to find Gall in possession of a gun, gloves and black clothing – the same type Walker had seen on the stranger outside his house.

At trial, Riley Gaul was found guilty of first-degree murder, stalking, theft, reckless endangerment and possession of a firearm during a felony, which earned him an automatic life sentence. However, he maintained until the end that he never intended to harm Emma Walker.

“I wanted to scare her,” Gaul told Walker’s family at the sentencing hearing. “I never meant to take Emma’s life.”

After reading about the death of Emma Walker, get into the full story of Adnan Syed, a high school student accused of murdering his girlfriend Hae Min Lee. Then learn about the infamous murder of Travis Alexander by his ex-girlfriend Jodi Arias.

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