KCSO: Cheerleader's killer knew just what he was doing

Emma Clark's boyfriend has been charged with her murder after officials say he fired a gun through her home.

KNOXVILLE - Authorities said the Maryville College football player accused of fatally shooting his former high school girlfriend knew just what he was doing when he fired two shots into the bedroom where she slept in her North Knox County home.

“He knew exactly where the victim was positioned and he would have known the trajectory of where that bullet would have went,” said Michael MacLean, a major with the Knox County Sheriff’s Office, which investigated the shooting.

Authorities earlier this month charged William Riley Gaul, 18, with the first-degree murder of Emma Walker, a 16-year-old cheerleader.

During a news conference on Wednesday, officials said Gaul stood in the fenced backyard of where the teen lived and fired a shot from a 9 mm pistol. He then jumped a 6-foot tall fence before firing again.

Both bullets went into Walker’s bedroom.

The shooting occurred about 3 a.m. on Nov. 21.

MacLean said Walker’s father “heard something” like “a door slamming.” He checked on his daughter and she appeared OK at the time.

“He feels horrible that he didn’t discover her,” MacLean said.

Officials say Gaul and Walker dated for about two years but had “a tumultuous, off again, on again relationship.”

“Riley was attempting communication but she had broken up two weeks prior,” MacLean said.

Gaul is in the Knox County Jail.


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