Statement Denied In Tot's Death

Posted: June 13, 1994

The emaciated 20-month-old boy, suffering from a badly bruised eye, was tied to his walker when Benjamin Council arrived at his sister's home last year.

Council told police that when he questioned Arlinda Walker, 43, about it, she told him she had tied her grandson, William Randolph Walker, to make sure he didn't fall and hurt himself.

Council also told Homicide Detective Jeff Piree that on one occasion his sister stopped someone from feeding the boy, who died Oct. 12, weighing only 13 pounds. The average 20-month-old boy weighs between 21 and 26 pounds.

Piree read Council's statement last week at Walker's re-arrest preliminary hearing. When Council took the witness stand, he said the statement was untrue.

The district attorney's office is asking Common Pleas Judge Carolyn E. Temin to reinstate a murder charge against Walker, of Robinson Street near Market, in the death of the child.

The charge was dismissed in April by Municipal Judge Michael J. Conroy, who held Walker for trial only on charges of involuntary manslaughter and endangering the welfare of a child.

Testimony resumes tomorrow.

Associate Medical Examiner Dr. Carlos Fonseca testified that the boy's lack of food led to his death from pneumonia and meningitis.

Regina Walker, 27, the boy's mother, is awaiting trial for murder.

Arlinda Walker was arrested after she testified for the prosecution at her daughter's hearing.

Defense attorney Joseph C. Santaguida said he was hoping to call Regina as his witness.

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