Three witnesses testify to Walker’s behavior before fatal Woodmore bus crash

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CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — Judge Don Poole heard arguments in Johnthony Walker’s case today.

Walker was behind the wheel November 21, 2016, when a Woodmore Elementary School bus crashed, killing six children.

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Three witnesses for the state testified regarding Walker’s previous behavior.

Some say they saw him driving recklessly prior to the crash. Others recall hearing him cussing at the kids.

But Judge Poole says its too early to tell if Walker’s relationship with the students will be relevant to the case.

“The interaction of this defendant with the students, I think it’s a very difficult time to determine how that could be relevant for any purpose on the day that this incident occurred,” Judge Poole said.

Today, the prosecution also agreed to not use cell phone records prior to the crash date, unless something becomes relevant.

Another preliminary hearing is scheduled for February 19th. After that, the court will head to Clarksville to choose a jury before the trial on February 27th.

“There’s been enough tragedy, enough heart ache. And I appreciate everybody’s behavior in court today. And let’s let that continue as you leave the courtroom, and continue as we get up to the trial. The case should be decided in the courtroom, and that’s the only way it should be decided,” Judge Poole said.

Walker and his attorney declined to comment after the hearing.

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Angela joined the News 12 team in November of 2017 as the weekend sports anchor and reporter. Angela is a proud member of an Army family, which means she has hometowns all over the Eastern Seaboard. Most recently, she calls Peachtree City, Georgia, home, where she graduated from Trinity Christian School and spent her free time driving her purple golf cart. She then headed to Milledgeville, Georgia, to attend Georgia College and State University. A proud Bobcat, Angela graduated Summa Cum Laude with a BA in Mass Communication and represented her December 2016 class as one of three valedictorians. Angela comes to the Scenic City from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, where she worked at the NBC affiliate, WMBF News. Before the big move, she worked as Georgia College's Sports Information Assistant, which let her get paid to be the Bobcats' biggest fan. It all started in Savannah, Georgia, though, where she interned for SAV's number one station, WTOC. When she's not working, you can find Angela watching the New York Giants, Rangers or basically any other game that's on. She also loves traveling, hiking and exploring new places, all with her camera in hand. If you have any story ideas, big or small, feel free to reach out to her on Facebook and Twitter, or email her at amoryan@wdef.com."