THERESA, N.Y. (AP/AP) – A U.S. Army soldier charged with killing his wife and a state trooper in northern New York plotted to shoot up his Michigan middle school while a teenager.
Justin Walters was a 15-year-old ninth-grade student at Macatawa Bay Middle School in Holland when he and classmate compiled a “die or dead list” and planned to shoot people at the school before killing themselves, according to a report in The Grand Rapids Press. Another classmate tipped off police to the 1999 plot. Walters pleaded guilty in family court to conspiracy to carry a dangerous weapon.
Walters was also linked to a vandalism incident in February 1999 at North Holland Cemetery in which more than 100 tombstones had been toppled or broken, according to the report. He pleaded guilty to malicious destruction of property and was sentenced to community service and a rehabilitation program.
The 32-year-old Walters, a Zeeland native, was charged early Monday with two counts of murder just hours after police say he fatally shot his wife, Nichole, and Trooper Joel Davis at the couple’s home in Theresa, N.Y.
Walters, who was stationed at nearby Fort Drum, joined the Army in 2007 and did two one-year tours in Afghanistan, in 2009 and again from March 2011 to March 2012, Army officials said.
Walters has given no motive for the shooting. He and his wife, who was 27, met around the time she finished high school in Mattydale, a community near Syracuse, her hometown friend Jerry Mikels said. She was devoted to her toddler-age son and was always willing to help people, he said.
“She got along with everybody,” he said. “If she knew you needed help, she would help out. She was there for my wife when she had cancer.”
Davis, 36, had been a state police trooper for four years, after 10 years as a county sheriff’s deputy in the area, police and friends said.
“He truly did love being a law enforcement officer,” family friend Chris Fletcher said. “One of his last texts to another one of his cousins was he couldn’t believe he got paid to do what he does.”
Walters is currently being held without bail for grand jury action.
© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.