Man accused of murdering Auburn police officer, injuring 2 others appears in court

Man accused of murdering Auburn police officer, injuring 2 others appears in court

LEE COUNTY, AL. (WTVM) - Grady Wayne Wilkes, the man accused of murdering an Auburn police officer and injuring two others appeared in court Tuesday.

Lee County District Attorney Brandon Hughes said the purpose of Tuesday’s hearing was to make sure Wilkes knew exactly what his charges were and what his bond was.

Hughes is seeking the death penalty in the case against Wilkes for the murder of Auburn Police Officer William Buechner.

“If you come to Lee County, you murder a law enforcement officer, I will absolutely seek whatever the stiffest punishment allowed under the law,” he said.

Wilkes is also facing three counts of attempted murder and second degree domestic violence. That last charge is how the call came in for police to go to the home where they were shot.

“It was a physical altercation," Hughes said. "It was certainly more than words. We’re alleging strangulation.”

The owner of the mobile home park where Wilkes lived said there’s never been a problem with Wilkes before.

“Never had an issue, never had a red flag," said owner Tom Cordi."Believe me, I’m always looking.”

He said Wilkes’ girlfriend was in Vet school at Auburn University.

“Him, I didn’t know a lot about. I know they had a baby a year or so ago,” Cordi said.

The Alabama National Guard confirmed Wilkes is currently a member and has been since 2010. He’s a corporal and fire team leader.

When asked about the role of PTSD in Wilkes’ defense,Hughes said they are already preparing.

“Anticipating potential defenses and potential mitigating factors, that’s something you try and head off on the front end,” Hughes said.

Hughes confirmed it was a long gun that was used to shoot the officers. The exact number of weapons is still being determined.

Copyright 2019 WTVM. All rights reserved.