CAPE GIRARDEAU, Missouri (Isabelle Zehnder reporting) — James “Clay” Waller, 40, was arrested Friday evening on a Class B Felony Charge of Stealing and Deceit, and a Class A Misdemeanor Charge of Harassment – charges allegedly not related to his wife’s disappearance.
Clay Waller was arrested at about 6 p.m. at a motel in Malden, MO. He was transported from Malden to the Cape Girardeau County Justice Center some time Friday evening. Judge Gary Kamp set Waller’s cash-only bonds at $55,000 for the stealing charge and $10,000 for the harassment charge.
Jacque’s family, friends, and community sighed a breath of relief and said they’d sleep better when they learned Waller was off the streets and behind bars. Read: Family, community, and public response to Clay Waller’s arrest.
Jacque’s dad, Stan Rawson, said, “I’m sure a lot of people will sleep better tonight knowing he’s in jail. I know I will.”
Jacque’s good friend and co-worker, Kristin said Friday evening, “The streets are safe tonight and some justice has been served, but no one will really rest until we have J4J ‘Justice for Jacque’.”
According to Cape Girardeau County Prosecuting Attorney Morley Swingle, Waller was charged with the two separate and unrelated charges Friday evening.
If convicted Waller faces five to 15 years in prison on the felony stealing charge and up to a year in jail and a fine of $1,000 for the harassment charge.
Waller told Gary Hill of Cape Girardeau that he was going to kill him and that he was “coming to get you right now.”
Earlier in the day it was reported that Gary Hill’s “soon-to-be ex-wife,” Cassandra “Tudy” Hill, called Gary to tell him that her ex-boyfriend, Clay Waller, was threatening to kill her over the phone. Gary Hill allegedly tried to intervene by calling Waller who then, according to a statement by police, threatened Gary’s life.
The Cape County Circuit Court Clerk confirmed during a phone call Friday afternoon that a restraining order against Clay Waller had been filed with the court by Cassandra Hill ordering him to stay away from her family.
A Probable Cause Statement issued by Sgt. Rodney Baker on July, 28, 2011, provides more details and shows that the harassment charge stems from a complaint that at 10:08 p.m. on July 27, 2011, Waller allegedly arrived at the home of Cassandra Hill who told police she’d been on the phone with Waller when he started “beating” on the door.
Cassandra said she looked out the window and saw Waller who allegedly arrived bare-chested, wearing yellow shorts, and a baseball cap that covered his recently-shaved head.
Officers checked the area but could not locate Waller. Cassandra stated she’d obtained an Ex-Parte Order #11CG-PN00542 against Waller Friday, however it had not yet been served. It was reported earlier in the day that Clay was headed out of town.
Cassandra said earlier in the evening Waller had continually called her asking when she was going to be home. Sources say Cassandra is Clay’s ex-girlfriend who he was seeing while he was married with Jacque. In fact, Jacque’s good friends say Gary Hill had contacted Jacque on numerous occasions letting her know about Cassandra’s and Clay’s relationship.
Jacque’s good friends said Jacque couldn’t be bothered, she had far more important things on her mind: Such as, how she and her children would survive another day living with a volatile, threatening, and abusive man. For more details read: Jacque Waller’s friends, co-workers say threats turned to domestic violence.
Cassandra was frightened for herself and her children and called her soon-to-be ex-husband, Gary Hill, and asked him to call Waller to tell him to stay away. She said that they were on a 3-way call when Gary told Waller to stay away from Cassandra and her kids.
Waller then told Gary that that he was going to kill him because Gary killed his wife. Waller then stated he was going to kill both of them. That’s when Cassandra had called Gary to let him know Waller was at her house trying to get into the door.
Gary told Waller he was at Cassandra’s apartment and warned him to stay away. Waller then said, “I’m coming to kill you right now.” Gary stated he hung up the phone and called 911.
As approximately 11:20 p.m., Sgt. Baker said he received a call from Waller at police headquarters saying he heard police were looking for him. Sgt. Baker advised him of the Ex-Parte Order and read it to him over the phone.
Sgt. Baker advised Waller he needed to come to headquarters to pick up his copy of the Order and Waller stated he would do so on July 28, 2011. Sgt. Baker then advised Waller of the complaint made by Cassandra and Gary Hill and he denied making the threats and said he’d not been in town that day. Waller said he’d been in Wapappello, MO, and Malden, MO, earlier in the day.
Sgt. Baker indicated the reason he felt a warrant should be issued for Waller’s arrest was that he believed the defendant would not appear in court in response to a criminal summons because he has no personal address, and because he believes Waller poses a danger to a crime victim because he made threats to kill Cassandra and Gary Hill.
Felony Stealing Charge
A Probable Cause Statement issued Friday details events leading to the Stealing by Deceit charge:
In early September 2009, Delta Companies, Inc. invited bids for a construction project to complete the interior of a building in Cape Girardeau. Waller, through his company Triple C Development, LLC, submitted a bid to finish the project. His bid was accepted.
Following his bid acceptance Waller approached the project manager of Delta, Josh Trolinger, requesting a $55,000 advance for materials. Trolinger requested an invoice detailing the items to be covered by the advance.
On April 14, 2010, Waller submitted the invoice and on April 21, 2010, a check in the amount of $55,000 was issued to Triple C Development for the purpose of purchasing steel framing materials, sheet rock, exterior and interior doors and hardware.
In October 2010 it was noted that work was not being done on the project. Trolinger contacted Waller and requested he provide receipts for materials purchased with the $55,000 advance.
The matter was taken over by Gerald Farnhan, the Plants and Equipment Manager for Delta Companies, Inc. Farnhan contacted Waller also in October 2010 to inquire about the $55,000 and Waller explained he no longer had the money that was advanced to him for building materials, that he could not produce receipts for materials purchased for the project, and that he was broke. To date, the Statement shows, Waller has not purchased the materials or completed the project.
On Friday, July 29, 2011, Sgt. Dennis Overbey of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, contacted Waller’s partner and co-owner of Triple C Development, Marsha Steger. Steger indicated she was familiar with the $55,000 advance that Waller received from Delta, and that she had personally prepared the invoice for the $55,000 advance.
Upon receiving and depositing the advance on April 23, 2010, Waller directed Steger to use the money to pay salaries, equipment rental, and other necessary expenses related to a different project that was not in any way related to the project for Delta Companies, Inc.
Steger confirmed the money was used for the other project and that no materials were ever purchased for the Delta Companies, Inc. project.
CaseNet.org – Triple C Development
According to CaseNet.org, Triple C Development and its owners were named in numerous lawsuits in 2011:
Jan. 24, 2011 – Case No. 11BO-TJ00003 – Div of Employment Security v. Triple C Development. Transcript Judgment $3,977.26 plus $10.50/mo interest; entered Jan. 24, not yet satisfied.
April 27, 2011 – 11BO-TJ00016 – Div Employment Security v. Triple C Development LLC. Transcript Judgment $2,658.40 plus $6.60/mo interest; entered Apr. 27, not yet satisfied.
May 6, 2011 – 11CG-CC00127 – Roland Machinery Company v. Triple C Dev et al. Breach of Contract lawsuit filed by Roland Machinery against Triple C and its owners. Default judgment entered $32,785.46, not yet satisfied. Case review hearing scheduled September 6, 2011.
June 16, 2011 – 11CG-CC00167 – Wood & Huston Bank v. Triple C Development et al. Wood & Huston Bank filed a Promissory Note against Triple C and its owners. A hearing is scheduled October 11, 2011, no further details were provided.
July 11, 2011 – 11BO-TJ00036 – Div Employment Security v. Triple C Development LLC. Transcript Judgment $3,197.20 plus $10.35/mo interest; judgment not yet satisfied.
July 26, 2011 – 11CG-CC00197 – Montgomery Bank v. Triple C Development et ux. Montgomery Bank filed a Promissory Note against Triple C and its owners. A Case Review hearing is scheduled November 7, 2011, no further details were provided.
Other pending and satisfied cases against James “Clay” Waller aka Clay Waller:
August 30, 2000 – 32V060002408 – Kerry Johnson dba v James Clay Waller. Hearings repeatedly rescheduled between July 2001 and April 2002, case dismissed by parties July 15, 2002. Case classified as AC Misc Associate Civil – other.
December 23, 2005 – 05CG-ML00012 – Talmadge G Uhles v James C Waller et ux. Mechanics Lien filed Dec. 23, satisfied February 23, 2006.
May 4, 2006 – 06CG-TJ00077 – Div of Employment Security v. James C Waller. Transcript Judgment $742.27; satisfied Jan. 11, 2010
July 16, 2007 – 07SO-CV01630 – Semo Ready Mix, Inc. v. Tri County Concrete. Breach of Contract filed against Clay Waller. Parties did not appear, case dismissed.
October 10, 2008 – 08CG-SC00190 – Budget Blinds of Cape v. Clay Waller. Small Claims over $100 filed against Waller; Judgment amount $1,020.73 to be paid directly to plaintiff; satisfaction of judgment not yet filed.
July 22, 2011 – 11BO-TJ00038 – Div of Employment Security v. James C Waller II, MBR, TRI. Transcript Judgment $3,281.62 plus $7.88/mo interest; satisfied of judgment not yet filed.
June 9, 1993 – 32R059300613 – State v. James C Waller. Criminal Infraction for Assault 3rd Degree; entered guilty plea July 28, 1993; Sentence 30 days in jail, suspended execution of sentence. Probation assigned for 730 days; completed July 28,1995. Community service July 28, 1993, completed November 1, 1993.
Waller’s attorney, Scott Reynolds, speaks on Waller’s behalf
Waller’s attorney, Scott Reynolds, was irate after his client was arrested saying police drummed up charges and took his client into custody so they could confine him and interrogate him. “It’s obvious,” he said.
Reynolds claims Waller was interrogated from 9 p.m. Friday night to 4 a.m. Saturday morning, when he was finally able to speak with his client from 4 to 5 a.m. Saturday, KFVS12.com reports.
Contrary to what Reynolds said, the Missouri State Highway Patrol and the Department of Labor’s Division of Labor Standards began investigating the stealing charge before Jacque disappeared.
The patrol submitted its probable cause statements on Friday, Cape Girardeau County Sheriff’s Department Lt. David James said, and the harassment complaint came to Cape Girardeau Police on Friday also.
Some have questioned why Reynolds’ is able to continue practicing law, let alone family law, when just last year in Feb. 2010, he was arrested on charges of felony armed criminal action, domestic violence, and endangering the welfare of a child.
A Probable Cause Affidavit and news reports show the lawyer assaulted his fiancée following an argument, leaving marks on her body, including a red mark the size of a softball on her back. The Affidavit shows Reynolds pointed a .357 revolver in his fiancée’s face and pulled the trigger five times. For more information, read: Mom of triplets missing, ex hires lawyer with troubles of his own.
Clay Waller is the only person of interest in his estranged wife, 39-year-old Jacque Sue Waller’s disappearance two months ago on June 1.
Jacque is the mother of 5-year-old triplets who have been in the custody of her sister since Jacque went missing.
Jacque’s friends and family say for over a year she told them that Clay threatened the lives if her and her children, and that she was living in constant fear.
Attempts to leave Clay only perpetuated the violence and instigated more threats. Read: Friends, co-workers say threats turned to domestic violence.
Jaque finally left Clay in March 2011, and filed for divorce the day she went misising.
Clay allegedly told her leaving him would be a death sentence.
Clay is the last person to have seen her and police say her disappearance appears to have been staged to look like an abduction. Jacque’s family believes she’s dead.
Police say they have questions for Waller in his estranged wife, 39-year-old Jacque Sue Waller’s case that he simply refuses to answer. For one, they want to know where he was the evening of June 1, when his wife of 17 years went missing.
Family, community response to Clay Waller’s arrest
Jacque Waller’s friends, co-workers say threats turned to domestic violence
Co-workers, friends share Jacque Waller’s concerns about her triplets
Plans to leave volatile marriage on-again,off-again
Ex claims innocence in disappearance of Jacque Waller: Who’s buying it?
Jacque Waller: Mom of triplets missing, ex hires lawyer with troubles of his own
Follow Jacque’s story on Twitter:
Follow Jacque’s story on Facebook:
Find Jacque S Waller page
Jacque S Waller Media Page
Jacque Waller Search Party Page
Justice for Jacque Fund Raiser Committee
Police ask if you see Jacque or have any information to call Jackson Police (573) 243-3151.
Police are interested in a Red 2009 GMC Sierra pickup truck with 4 doors during this same time frame. The truck may have been pulling an aluminum V-bottom boat with an 8-horse Johnson motor on the black trailer. Jacque’s car, a blue 2006 Honda Pilot, MO Plates HA5-D5J was found in I-55 near the 105-mile marker (near Jackson/Fruitland) abandoned and with a flat tire.
Would you like to donate to the triplets or the reward fund?
Two funds have been set up with US Bank:
The “Jacque Waller Family Fund” for care of the triplets; and
The “Justice for Jacque Fund” which offers a reward for the information leading to Jacque
Find a US Bank location here: www.usbank.com.
Help for women of domestic violence
There is help for women in crisis who are victims of domestic abuse.
In the Cape Girardeau / SE Missouri area – Safe House for Women – Local Hotline Number 1-800-341-1830.
Outside the SE Missouri area – National Domestic Violence Hotline – 1-800-799-SAFE (7233.)
Website: www.susanmurphymilano.com – Valuable information on steps women can take to protect themselves.
“Time’s Up” explains what women who are in an abusive relationship should do before they plan to leave.