James Staley III arrested for murder of Wilder McDaniel

Published: Oct. 8, 2020 at 10:24 PM CDT
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WICHITA FALLS, Texas (TNN) - James Staley III has been arrested for murder, according to Wichita Falls police.

WFPD announced Thursday that Staley was arrested on a first degree murder warrant for the Oct., 11 2018 death of Jason Wilder McDaniel.

The warrant was executed by WFPD detectives with the assistance of the Wichita County DA Office, Okmuglee Police Department and Okmuglee County Sheriff’s Department Special Operations Team. Staley is currently in custody in Okmuglee and his bond has not been set at this time.

A medical expert’s opinion from a doctor specializing in pediatrics helped build the case against James Staley.

“Doctor Dakil provided us with key medical evidence and she helped tie the forensic evidence in a way that we are conformable,” John Gillespie, Wichita County District Attorney said.

Gillespie adds that work with Dr. Dakil that started in September lead them to one suspect, after an autopsy that seemed suspicious for homicide was ruled undetermined.

“She’s [Dr. Dakil] board certified in child abuse pediatrics, she’s testified in many child homicide cases in Dallas County, and she teaches pediatrics at UT Southwestern Medical, she’s a top notch expert,” Gillespie said.

The process now begins to extradite Staley to Wichita County.

“Certainly we all wanted justice for Wilder, I think right now we are on that journey to get him that justice,” Manuel Borrego, Wichita Falls Police Chief said.

“We’ve brought in a crime scene reconstructionist, we brought in high level forensic examination, we consulted with child homicide prosecution experts, and it was that teamwork, that collaboration that got us to where we are today,” Gillespie said.

Things are now moving to the next chapter, nearly two years to the day after Wilder’s death.

“Both at the District Attorney’s Office and Wichita Falls Police Department’s work is committed to getting justice for Wilder,” Gillespie said.

WFPD Chief Manuel Borrego called the investigation “very complex."

READ: Wilder McDaniel autopsy report suggests homicide

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