Iowa Community Seeks Justice In Stabbing Murder Of Devonna Walker
Police in Cedar Rapids, Iowa know who killed Devonna Walker on Jan. 2, but no arrests have been made.
Protest from community leaders in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is growing louder with each day that passes since 29-year-old Devonna Walker was stabbed to death on Jan. 2, 2023 outside the Cambridge Townhomes in the northern part of the city.
Devonna Walker, who is Black, was reportedly walking around 6:45 p.m. on Jan. 2 when she got into a verbal altercation with a white man and a white woman. In cell phone footage shared by CBS News 2 in Cedar Rapids, Walker is seen on video arguing with a white woman walking a large dog. A white man inside a nearby apartment opens the door and joins the fray, eventually yelling several racial slurs at Walker.
Following the verbal attack, Walker advances and pushes the woman walking the dog. At that moment, the man appears to stab Walker. Walker stumbles away, eventually collapsing on the ground several feet from where she was stabbed.
In the video, the woman stands over Walker and allegedly says, “Oh she’s playing stupid. She’s playing stupid. Leave her alone. She’s acting like the dog attacked her.”
According to reports, it took the police another six and a half minutes to arrive. Walker did not receive CPR or any kind of first aid until eight minutes after she fell to the ground. She later died at a nearby hospital. She left behind three children.
The Cedar Rapids Police Department reportedly detained the still-unnamed man and woman that night, but they were released with no charges filed.
On Jan. 11, the CRPD police chief and the Linn County attorney issued a statement that said in part, “The Cedar Rapids Police Department and Linn County Attorney Nick Maybanks consulted on the investigation and determined further investigation was necessary to determine whether charges were applicable and what they would be if deemed appropriate. Because this is an ongoing investigation, we are not in the position to release any more details about the incident.”
The statement went on to point out that it can take weeks or months to investigate a crime.
Meanwhile, protestors and community activists began working to put pressure on the police to make an arrest in Walker’s case by demonstrating outside the Cedar Rapids Police Department. In late January, there was a town hall-style meeting at the library where organizers invited elected officials and police to attend. According to The Gazette in Cedar Rapids, the invited parties were either unable to attend or declined their invitations.
On Feb. 3, the Linn County attorney released a statement that said he hoped to make a decision in the case by the end of February.