Murder investigation underway near Patterson - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Murder investigation underway near Patterson

(Source: Kristina Lautenbacher) (Source: Kristina Lautenbacher)
(Source: Kristina Lautenbacher) (Source: Kristina Lautenbacher)
(Source: Kristina Lautenbacher) (Source: Kristina Lautenbacher)
Samuel Whitaker (Source: Wayne County Sheriff's Department) Samuel Whitaker (Source: Wayne County Sheriff's Department)
Whitaker's fiance Dawn Wahby Whitaker's fiance Dawn Wahby

One suspect is in custody and a man is dead following a shooting in Patterson Monday evening.

Samuel Whitaker, 44, of Patterson is charged with first degree murder, armed criminal action, and first degree burglary.

The call came in around 6:20 p.m. on Monday, according to the Wayne County Sheriff's Office.

Carl Streeval, 41, was shot in the Lake Creek area near Patterson.

Wayne County Sheriff Dean Finch says Streeval called into dispatch and said he'd been shot in the head by his step-father-in-law. By the time authorities arrived, Streeval was dead.

Records state Streeval stayed on the phone with the dispatcher saying he was losing blood -- and Whitaker was still there. The dispatcher says she heard Streeval say "I've never missed a payment" and then line went dead.

Officers found Whitaker standing outside the home when they arrived. Streeval was dead on the bathroom floor. with the door broken off the hinges and laying over his body.

Officers say Whitaker told them Streeval was waiving Whitaker's father's ring in his face and he couldn't take it anymore.

After that Whitaker quit talking.

"It appears to be some kind of on going property dispute at this residence," said Sheriff Finch. "We think that was probably the motive."

Records state both the suspect and victim had called the department earlier in the day of the shooting to discuss the property in question. Sheriff Finch says that property is the same location as the place where the crime happened. According to records, the victim had reported that he had paperwork showing he was buying the residence and the suspect claimed the title to the residence had been stolen. 

As Whitaker made his first court appearance Thursday, his fiancé Dawn Wahby spoke out about the murder investigation.

“This should not have happened,” said Wahby.

Wahby tells us she believes something different may have happened than what’s detailed in court records. She says earlier Monday the tension escalated between Whitaker and Streeval over the property. She believes the property is rightfully Whitaker’s and she says they have documents to prove it.

“We went to authorities to try and end this,” said Wahby. “We just wanted Streeval removed. Sam is a good man, a Godly man.”

Court records say Whitaker followed Streeval into the bathroom. Records say Streeval was shot twice.

“I think that may not have been what happened,” said Wahby. “We feared for our life. Earlier that day he (Streeval) had sat in front of our home with a gun just staring like he couldn’t decide what to do. He told us he would burn the house down. We were scared for our lives. Sam had told me to leave right after the kids got off the bus. The next thing I knew I got the call Sam had been arrested. I feel like maybe it was self-defense.”

Sheriff Dean Finch tells Heartland News the victim called after he’d been shot one time and the dispatcher stayed on the line with him until the phone went dead. Records say Streeval told the dispatcher Whitaker was trying to break into the bathroom. Court records say deputies found Streeval in the bathroom floor with the door on top of him when they arrived.

Thursday Finch said Streeval did not have a gun. Finch says Whitaker is in the Wayne County Jail. Whitaker is due back in court November 19th.

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