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Hester Hall Fire
Tue November 22, 2011
Walker Trial Date Set
By Drew Adams
Murray, KY – A judge has set a July trial date for the Paducah man facing a second round of charges in a fatal 1998 dorm fire at Murray State University. Jerry Wayne Walker has pleaded not guilty to charges of manslaughter, arson, assault and 14 counts of wanton endangerment in Calloway County. The campus fire in Hester Hall killed 19-year-old Michael Minger, of Niceville, FL, and later prompted changes in campus fire security in Kentucky. On Monday, Judge Dennis Foust set a July 6 trial date for Walker and took under advisement two motions to dismiss the charges and a third requesting a change of venue. Walker's 2001 trial ended when a jury deadlocked 10-2 in favor of acquittal and a judge declared a mistrial. Prosecutors charged Walker again in September.