Neighbors, ex-girlfriend react to Ellis' arrest - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Neighbors, ex-girlfriend react to Ellis' arrest

MILWAUKEE (WISN) -- Milwaukee police have made an arrest in the investigation into several cold-case homicides.

The nine victims were all women and are all linked to the same DNA profile.

49-year-old Walter E. Ellis was arrested Saturday in Fanklin.

According to the Milwaukee Police Department, they are talking with Ellis, a person of interest in connection with a number of cold-case homicides in Milwaukee.

"I'm shivering, I have goose bumps up my arm," said Chanita, a former girlfriend of Ellis.

She spoke to WISN 12's Kent Wainscott Monday through a closed screen door. For four years, she says, she dated the man now believed to be a suspect in a string of murders.

"That was just my ex-boyfriend," she said. "I didn't know nothing about nothing like this, I'm getting shivery now cause you're talking about some strangling stuff. Lord have mercy on me, I'm just a wreck right now I can't believe this, I'm trembling in here, I'm shakin'."

Chanita said the detectives gave no indication why they were looking at Ellis.

"I can't believe it, this is a shock. I got like goose bumps on my arms, instantly when you told me that, I'm like no way - not Walter - I can't see him hurting nobody," she said.

In the neighborhood where Ellis lived, residents said that police searched his home in recent days, but neighbors say they are still shocked to hear there may be connection to the cold-case murders.

"It's scary man, you don't know what to do what to say, cause it's a couple of houses down," said neighbor James Brooks.

"Right in the neighborhood, right next door, you never figured it out," said area resident Stony Stallworth. "He's walking back and forth doing what he do, and nobody ever had a clue."

Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn said investigators looked at more than 15,000 cases.

"This search was about shoe leather and science," Flynn said.

A search warrant was executed at Ellis' residence and the suspect was arrested after a "struggle" Flynn said.

Two charges of first-degree homicide were issued against Ellis.

Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisom said more charges in connection with other cases are expected later this week.

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