Waller enters courthouse, expected to plead guilty - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Waller enters courthouse, expected to plead guilty

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Clay Waller walking into the Cape Girardeau County Courthouse on Thursday, June 6 (Source: KFVS Photojournalist Joshua Russell). Clay Waller walking into the Cape Girardeau County Courthouse on Thursday, June 6 (Source: KFVS Photojournalist Joshua Russell).
Clay Waller Clay Waller
Jacque Waller Jacque Waller
Law enforcement searched a stretch of Interstate 55 for clues about Jacque. Law enforcement searched a stretch of Interstate 55 for clues about Jacque.
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JACKSON, MO (KFVS) -

Clay Waller is expected to enter a guilty plea at a hearing Thursday at 1:30 p.m.

The public should learn much more about the case during the hearing.

Clay Waller is expected to change his plea from not guilty to guilty.

Last spring prosecutors charged him with murder in connection with his soon to be ex-wife's disappearance. He initially pleaded not guilty and was set to stand trial in September.

It's been a very long two years for everyone involved investigators, search crews, friends...and especially the family of jacque waller.

Thursday is what some are calling the grand finale.

Waller is expected to not only change his plea, to be sentenced as well.

He has been behind bars since July of 2011. He was first arrested for stealing and harassment charges which were later dropped.

He was then charged and convicted of a federal charge for threatening Jacque Waller's sister online.

Then in April 2012, he was charged with first-degree murder and tampering with evidence.

The prosecutor's office confirms that the remains of Jacque Waller were recovered by law enforcement on Wednesday, May 29. They are not releasing where the body was found. Sources do tell Heartland News Jacque Waller was found in the Devil's Island area of southern Illinois.

Investigators say Jacque Waller and Clay Waller got into a fight at a home he was staying in on June 1, 2011.The homeowner and a neighbor told police they saw Jacque's Honda Pilot where Clay Waller was staying, and later saw Clay leave in his truck pulling a boat.

Jacque's SUV was later found abandoned on Interstate 55 just south of Fruitland the next day.

Law enforcement, friends, and volunteers organized many searches for Jacque's body, but had found little clues about where her body was located.

Jacque's triplets have been living with her sister and brother-in-law.

A big crowd is expected in the courtroom with limited seating and media from the St. Louis area and beyond. Heartland News will have the only video camera in the hearing.

[See complete coverage of the search for Jacque Waller.]

Waller will plead in front of Judge Benjamin Lewis.

No cameras, phones, or computers/tablets are allowed in courtroom.

Judge Lewis anticipates victim impact statements from Jacque's family. Waller will be given the opportunity to speak at the hearing.

Meantime, Jacque's family says her funeral is set for this Saturday in St. Francois County.

There will be a news conference at 3:30 p.m. after the sentencing with various law enforcement agencies, coroner, prosecuting attorney, and several of Jacque Waller's family members. Heartland News will carry that press conference live on KFVS, kfvs12.com, and our mobile news app.

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