Waller's court date set for murder charge

James Clay Waller
James Clay Waller
Jacque Waller
Jacque Waller

JACKSON, MO (KFVS) - A court date has been scheduled for the murder charge against Clay Waller.

Cape Girardeau County Prosecutor Morley Swingle says Waller's initial appearance is scheduled for June 4, 2012 in front of Associated Circuit Judge Gary Kamp at the courthouse in Jackson.

Waller, 41, is charged with first degree murder and two counts of tampering with evidence in connection with his wife, Jacque Waller.

Also, according to U.S. Assistant Attorney Larry Ferrell arguments are set in St. Louis regarding Waller's appeal to his 5 year federal sentence.

Waller pleaded guilty to internet threat charges, and is currently serving time in a Louisiana prison.

The hearing on that is set for June 15.

Meanwhile, Clay Waller's attorney Scott Reynolds is growing frustrated by the minute with the lack of communication that is being allowed between him and his client.

Scott Reynolds tells Heartland News he hasn't spoken with his client since a few days after Clay Waller was charged with murder.

Reynolds says his repeated attempts to contact the Oakdale Correctional Center in Louisiana have proved unsuccessful.

He believes his client is in isolation, and is only allowed one 15 minute collect call per week.

Heartland News contacted officials at the Federal Correctional Complex in Oakdale, Louisiana to inquire about this matter.

According to J.P. Young, the warden at the facility, based on the Privacy Act questions concerning Waller's housing assignment are not public information.

The warden went on to say inmates in the Bureau of Prisons ordinarily have access to the Inmate Telephone System for up to 300 minutes per month. This applies to all inmates with an ITS account in Bureau institutions, and may be used for any combination of collect or direct-dial calls to numbers on the inmate's approved contact list.

Jacque Waller has been missing since June 1, 2011. Her body has not been found. She was 39 at the time of her disappearance.  Jacque and Clay had 5-year-old triplets at the time of her disappearance.

Clay and Jacque were going through the process of divorce.  According to court documents, Clay Waller signed documents to start the divorce process, but would not leave them with his lawyer.  He encouraged her to do the same, according to court documents.

Jacque had talked to her sister over the phone around 3:50 p.m. on June 1 and told her she was going to pick up her son from Clay's home and return "straight home."  She then talked to her boyfriend on the phone around 3:56 p.m. and told him she was picking up her son and would return home.

According to court documents, Clay's girlfriend told police she and Clay were supposed to have dinner together with his son and one of her children, but he met her at a local business parking lot and indicated to her he would not be having dinner with them.  He later asked her to keep his son overnight at her home, which she had never done before with Clay not there also.

The homeowner and a neighbor told police they saw Jacque's Honda Pilot at Clay's home and later saw Clay leave in his truck pulling a boat.

On Monday, June 6, investigators found blood splatter on the walls of a darkened hallway.  It did appear an attempt had been made to clean the walls, according to court documents.  The DNA profile of the blood from the hallway was the same DNA profile as Jacque.

On June 8, investigators searched a crawl space and found broken spider webs and it appeared the dust on the floor of the crawl space had been disturbed.

Investigators found a large amount of green carpet cut into several pieces in the crawl space.  Areas of the carpet had apparent blood stains and blood pooling was evidence on the carpet.  The blood matched the DNA of Jacque's.

Clay told investigators Jacque's nose had started bleeding while in the house and she tripped on the green carpet as she ran to clean it up.

Clay told investigators he had removed the carpet from the hallway because he did not want the owner of the home to find it and think something bad happened, according to court documents.

Clay then told police after Jacque was cleaned up, they began to argue about financial issues.  He said he became angry and threw her keys into a tree.  She told him she would walk to a friend's house and he watched her walk away.  He said she had her purse with her when she left.  He then told investigators he got a broom handle to get the keys from the tree and put them on the windshield of her vehicle.

According to court documents, Clay then said he left the house, but did not take his cell phone with him.  He said over the next few hours, he drove around the Cape Girardeau area and at time would leave his truck to use the bathroom in wooded areas.  He also told police he would park roadside to read or work on crossword puzzles or work on the boat that was attached to his truck.

Jacque's laptop was recovered and police found a diary in which she detailed alleged threats from Clay threatening to kill her if she left him, according to court documents.

A Missouri Department of Transportation worker found a camera bag in a ravine on Nov. 3, 2011 in a ravine on the southbound side of Interstate 55.  That is across from where Jacque's Honda Pilot was found abandoned on June 2.

The last phone calls to come from Jacque's cell phones were at 6:02 p.m. to a co-worker and 6:03 p.m. on June 1 to Clay's cell phone. Both were missed calls.

The area had recently been mowed.  Jacque's purse, parts of cell phones, her driver's license, credit cards and other items thought to be from Jacque's purse were found.

Court documents say Clay was "largely uncooperative, and at times, intentionally obstructive to the investigation by concealing/destroying suspect evidence, planting false evidence and deliberately misleading officer in their effort to locate his wife."

Waller is currently in a Louisiana prison.  He was sentenced to five years behind bars in federal court after pleading guilty to threatening his sister in law on the website Topix last year.

Jacque Waller's parents say there is a bit of relief in knowing that charges have been brought against Clay Waller and they are looking for forward to getting justice for Jacque.

"The whole thing is going to come out, we want it all to come out the good the bad and the ugly," said Stan Rawson, Jacque's father. "Let the people judge then."

Jacque Waller's mom, Ruby Rawson, said she has total faith that justice will prevail.

"We've trusted in God, and we pray," said Ruby Rawson. "We have so many people praying for us and we know we'll get an answer."

Cape Girardeau County Prosecutor Morley Swingle says they will not be seeking the death penalty in this case. Missouri statute states prosecutors can only seek the death penalty if one of 17 aggravating factors are proven such as the defendant torturing the victim or a prior murder conviction.

Swingle enters new territory on this case, as this is the first time his office has charged a person with murder without a body being found.

"It's not the first case for Missouri though," said Swingle.

Copyright 2012 KFVS. All rights reserved.