Saturday, September 04, 1999

Two charged for using slain man's credit cards

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        INDIANAPOLIS — After weeks spent waiting outside Amoco gas stations here, the patience of two Springdale, Ohio, police officers paid off: They arrested two men on charges of theft and are questioning them about the slaying of Frederick Walker.

        The 67-year-old Springdale resident was found dead in his home on July 19, killed by blunt-force trauma, according to the Hamilton County coroner.

        Carl Travis Jr., 22, and Darrel Davenport, 32, have been using the man's credit cards to buy gas at several Indianapolis Amoco stations ever since, police said.

        They were arrested in an Aug. 17 stakeout and arraigned in Marion County court. Mr. Travis was charged with theft of the credit cards and is being held in the county jail. Mr. Davenport, charged with related driving offenses, posted bond and was released.

        Now Springdale police are trying to determine if the men were responsible for Mr. Walker's death and the theft of his mint-condition 1971 Buick Centurion, which was found abandoned at Tri-County Mall on the day his body was found. The disappearance of the car, plus Mr. Walker's failure to take in his newspapers for at

        least three days, alerted neighbors that something was wrong at his Lawnview Avenue home.

        “We have placed property (the credit cards) from the victim in their possession. This obviously focused the investigation on them and we are following leads,” said Springdale Police Chief Michael Laage.

        But so far, police have no other evidence to link the men to Mr. Walker — or even to the Cincinnati area.

        “We're looking for ties ... does anybody know that they were down here,” Chief Laage said.

        The slain man's credit cards were used 27 times at four Amoco stations, said Indianapolis Police spokesman Sgt. Paul Ciesielski. Credit card purchases were made at Tri-County Mall on the day police think Mr. Walker died, and in Indianapolis just a few hours later.

        “We knew they were being used there. The problem was we couldn't locate them within a reasonable amount of time,” Chief Laage said. “We ended up staking out a lot of different gas stations.”

        Police are seeking help in linking Mr. Travis and Mr. Davenport to Cincinnati, as well as in gathering other information about the homicide.

        Anyone with information is asked to call the Springdale police department at 346-5760.


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