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Walton family express condolences to fallen Deputy John Durm's family

Daycare shooting scene and deputy memorial
Posted at 7:09 PM, Jul 12, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-12 19:14:38-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Orlando Mitchell is accused of strangling Marion County Deputy John Durm with his handcuffs during an escape from the Marion County Jail.

Mitchell was awaiting trial for the murder of Christopher Walton’s daughter, Krystal.

Krystal was shot and killed at an Indianapolis daycare while dropping off her children in September of 2022.

“He and his family are all I’ve been thinking of,” Walton said. “To the family of deputy John Durm, the deepest heartfelt condolences and sympathy to you. This was a barbaric act on his life that should have never happened. I didn't know Deputy Durm, but he has been a servant of his community for almost of 40 years.”

Mitchell was accused of strangling Krystal in the past, along with making other threats.

“As much as I want to say I know what you’re going through, I can’t say that because I feel like each experience is unique. We lost our angel Krystal, and, in that case, they lost a father, friend, brother, son. I don't know what that's like but I do know the pain that follows it,” Walton said.

Walton says when the Marion County victim’s advocate told his family about the escape, it sent fear through his family.

"As soon as the event occurred, we got the phone calls. We went into safety mode because we didn't know what exactly was going to transpire," Walton said.

Mitchell was quickly detained by metro police and deputies after he crashed a stolen wagon into a utility pole.

Walton says wounds have re-opened, but they don't want to take away from Deputy Durm's family.

He wants the Durms to know he's here for them.

“And I can’t tell you how sorry I am that he had to go through that. Now, this family is going to spend years or a lifetime trying to recover from this, just as we are,” Walton said. “Try to remember a lot of the good things he contributed to the family. Stick together.”

WRTV has reached out to the Marion County Sheriff’s Office regarding policies and procedures. The office says it’s working to answer our questions.