River Death Investigation

By: Sarah Platt Email
By: Sarah Platt Email

After Brenda Walker's body was pulled from the St. Joseph River on Saturday, autopsy results show no external or internal signs of foul play. Meantime, Walker's family and friends don't believe her death was an accident.

47-year-old Brenda Walker's son, 18-year-old Dionta Porter, reported his mom missing just 10 days ago. At the time, neighbors hadn't seen her in a few days. On Saturday, her body was found in the St. Joseph River. Family and friends say Walker had a troubled past. They suspect foul play is involved.

Friends and family are wondering if an incident earlier this month, may have something to do with her river death. On May 9th, Walker filed a police report, saying she'd been assaulted by a group of men, near the river. She didn't go into much detail in the report and declined to press charges.
It's unclear if that incident had anything to do with her death. Meantime, Walker's son is still in shock that it was his mom's body that had been pulled from the river. “What happened was that her neighbors noticed her door left open for several days and they contacted her boyfriend, who contacted me, I checked and the door was open and she wasn't there,” says Dionta Porter.

“There has been a tremendous amount of speculation and a lot of that speculation has been based upon complete falsehoods and we're asking people that might have information to come forward, we'd like to hear from you,” says South Bend Police Captain Phil Trent.

Walker is also no stranger to the law. Over the years, she's been in and out of the Saint Joseph County Jail; for disorderly conduct, public intoxication and child neglect.

The coroner says he expects toxicology results to be back in the next couple of weeks. Those results may help investigators wrap up their case.


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