Boyfriend Charged with Capital Murder

August 8, 2006 -- Posted at 5:54 p.m. CDT

JONESBORO, AR -- 23-year-old James Waller of Bay has been charged with capital murder in the shooting death of, who police believe, is 24-year-old Cassandra Adney.

A body fitting her description was found on Saturday in a ditch near Bay.

Authorities were able to arrest Waller on Saturday on misdemeanor drug charges and hold him until more evidence was found.

According to the missing persons report filed by Adney's mother, Adney had been having problems with Waller over the child they shared.

"Once we recovered the body and got that out of the way, we got some phone calls from people that said Mr. Waller was the last one seen with her.  The body was found outside of Bay, so that made a pretty strong connection," said Craighead County Sheriff Jack McCann.

Within hours of discovering the body, the wheels were already in motion to arrest a suspect.

"They've done a lot of interviews, ran a lot of search warrants, and collected a lot of evidence and put together a good case," said McCann.

One piece of evidence missing still is the murder weapon.

"We're still searching for it... we have no idea where it's at," said McCann.

But Sheriff Jack McCann says they are sure they have the right guy.

"There's just a lot of evidence connecting him to it.  We can put the caliber of weapon that was used and we can put him in possession of that same caliber weapon," said McCann.

Waller showed no emotion as the charges against him were read in the courtroom.  He claims that he did not kill the mother of his child.

Due to the nature of the crime and the amount of evidence in their possession, officials decided to go ahead and charge Waller even without proper identification of the body.

"The dental records have been sent to the state crime lab and we should have those results some time this week," said McCann.

Waller's bond for the capital murder charge is set for $1,000,000.  He also faces a $450 bond for previous drug charges.

Waller's next court date is set for September 29th.