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'Krystal did all the things she was supposed to do': Family asks for change after Indy daycare shooting

Posted at 9:29 PM, Sep 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-19 21:29:34-04

INDIANAPOLIS — A mother was killed while dropping off her kids at a west side daycare. It happened Friday outside of Charity Child Care on 10th and Holmes.

Friends are calling on lawmakers for change.

Shawnta Barnes shared with WRTV a memory book.

"There's Krystal smiling like always. There's me over there looking whose going to win but we did everything together," Barnes said.

Signs saying, "We love you, Krystal," a balloon release, and prayer is how Krystal Walton's family and friends are coming together to remember her.

"If I had one word to describe Krystal it was joyful," Barnes said. "She always had a sense of joy about her and she wanted you to feel joy and I am saddened that her children will not be able to experience that joy."

"I love my mom. She was the best mom ever," said her daughter.

"Tears started flowing from everyone's eyes when she came up to the microphone and said she loved her mom and said she was the best mom ever. For her to only have experienced Krystal for such a short time. It's heartbreaking to me she was very lovely," Barnes said.

Walton was shot and killed outside of the child care center her two children attended.

Her accused killer, Orlando Mitchell, is the father of her youngest son.

Court documents show Walton told police multiple times, that she was worried Mitchell would kill her.

In March of 2021, Walton called 911 saying Mitchell choked and attacked her while she was four months pregnant with his baby.

This past July, Mitchell pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of domestic battery as a misdemeanor.

He was sentenced to nearly a year in jail, but the sentence was suspended.

Instead, the Marion County Prosecutor's Office says he was given one-year probation, 26-week domestic violence counseling or batterer's intervention, along with a no-contact order for Walton and her daughter.

IMPD says a protective order was also in place.

Those orders were violated in August due to threats.

Two arrest warrants were later issued on August 30, and on September 15, the day before Walton's murder.

"The main message I want domestic violence perpetrators to know especially when children are involved is you have children that are now parentless. You have a child whose father killed his mother," Barnes said. "I mean my heart goes out to when that child when he has to learn what happened. I would say remember the children that are involved. Come around them shelter them."

Friends and family encourage domestic violence victims to speak up and are calling on the justice system for change.

"Take any action that you can. Tell your closest family members and loved ones and in this situation. Krystal did all the things she was supposed to do," Barnes said. So, sometimes it's not the victims that need to do more. It's the lawmakers and policymakers that need to do more so that an individual like this isn't available to harm someone."