"I have raw skin around my eyes — I cry every day," said the mother of a slain 19-year-old Prague man as she spoke during Thursday's sentencing for her son's killer.
Glendon Gouker, 42, will spend the rest of his life in prison for the 2010 murder of Ethan James Dorand Walton, as well as the brutal kidnapping and rape of Walton's girlfriend.
Gouker pleaded guilty to nine felony counts Thursday in Pottawatomie County District Court.
District Judge John Canavan sentenced him to serve five consecutive life sentences, one of them being life without parole, plus another 70 years, with sentences running one after the other.
"He's going to die in an Oklahoma prison — that is assured by this plea," said Pottawatomie County District Attorney Richard Smothermon.
Gouker has been jailed since his arrest three years ago. He was charged with attacking Walton and putting his body in a 55-gallon barrel. He also was charged with numerous counts for luring Walton's girlfriend into an outbuilding and then holding the woman against her will as forcibly raped her for hours before she could escape by jumping through a window, naked, to seek help at a nearby home.
The alleged incidents occurred at Gouker's home in rural Prague on Sept. 8, 2010, where Walton and his girlfriend had gone to talk to Gouker about the sale of some land.
As part of a plea agreement that also involves Gouker's cooperation for an ongoing case in Wisconsin, Gouker pleaded guilty to all counts in Pottawatomie County.
Walton's mother, Kathleen Kline, read aloud a written Victim Impact Statement before the judge handed down that sentencing.
"This crime has cost me hope," she said, adding it's also cost the family its trust in people.
"This crime has robbed my son of life, of being a dad, of feeling the joys of being a parent, of feeling the joys of being my son."
She said the crime has taken her son away from all those family members and friends who loved him and were very close to him.
In exchange for Gouker's cooperation in the investigation of a Wisconsin double homicide case from 1992, for which he is a person of interest, as well as him entering a guilty plea for a 1990 rape case for which he is charged in Wisconsin, Smothermon withdrew the death penalty originally sought against Gouker for the Prague case.
Kline, who initially wanted Gouker to die for his crimes, agreed to the plea to help the other victims in Wisconsin see justice and know that Gouker would be behind bars for good.
"That was all due to Kathleen Kline…and her selfless desire to put those families first and give them closure," Smothermon said about the agreement.
Page 2 of 2 - Gouker was extradited to Wisconsin in February after DNA evidence linked him to the 1990 rape case there; he also was named a person of interest in the unsolved double homicide there and that investigation is ongoing. Reports indicate Gouker previously resided in Wisconsin and moved to Oklahoma in 1993.
Brad Hardel, the sheriff of Waupaca County in Wisconsin, said Smothermon and his investigators have worked with Wisconsin authorities, including sending Gouker to Wisconsin as part of the probe.
"I cannot put into words the appreciation and respect we have for his [Smothermon's] office in showing us the hospitality and teamwork offered to us in Wisconsin, to move our cases forward for the victims and their families," Hardel said. "For that, I am thankful."
Gouker will face sentencing by satellite today for the first-degree sexual assault charge in the Wisconsin case, Smothermon said, with that sentence expected to run consecutively to the Oklahoma cases, court records show. As part of the sentencing in Pottawatomie County, court records show Gouker must "cooperate and testify truthfully," with the state of Wisconsin.
For Walton's girlfriend, the woman Gouker held and raped on that September day three years ago, life won't be the same ever again. The woman attended Thursday's sentencing but didn't speak. Instead, she submitted a brief Victim's Impact Statement to the court outlining her Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, seizures and other issues stemming from this incident.
For Walton's murder in count one, Gouker was sentenced to life without parole. He also was sentenced on three counts of first-degree rape, receiving life sentences in each; along with two counts of forcible oral sodomy, receiving 20 years in each count; and kidnapping, for which she received 20 years. He was sentenced to 10 years for possession of a firearm during commission of a felony and received another life term for unlawful possession of a controlled drug with intent to distribute.
In 2012, Gouker's wife and sister, Michelle Gouker, 31, was sentenced on kidnapping and drug charges for her role in this case.
Glendon Gouker will remain jailed in the Pottawatomie County Public Safety Center until he is transferred to a state penitentiary.