Brandon man acquitted in 2013 murder now charged in wife’s death, deputies say

Hillsborough County

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – In a bizarre and possibly stunning twist, a Brandon man who was found not guilty of killing his wife’s lover in 2013 was again arrested, this time for killing her inside their Brandon home, investigators said.

Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office investigators explained that 77-year-old Ralph Wald, a Vietnam War veteran, shot and killed his wife in September 2019. The sheriff’s office did not identify her, but the medical examiner’s office said they received the body of Johnna Flores.

The drama involving the couple spans years.

Wald spoke to 8 On Your Side in 2013, claiming he had nothing to do with the death of Walter Conley. Conley was Flores’ lover, prosecutors said.

“I thought from day one, I was not guilty of a crime,” Wald told News Channel 8 at the time.

And that’s what a jury thought, too – that he did not do it.

Prosecutors said Wald shot and killed Conley when he walked in on Conley and his wife having sex. Wald claimed he thought Conley was an intruder raping his wife.

The couple has had a tumultuous past. Court records show Flores shot at Wald back in 2012, just days after they moved in together. Then, years later, the couple filed for divorce but it was taken back.

8 On Your Side learned Wald was arrested last Friday at a senior living facility in Brandon. Management refused to confirm if Wald lived there, then later said he did not.

“The investigation and forensic evidence revealed the victim was shot by Ralph Wald. The firearm used during this incident was found to be the same firearm used in a homicide that occurred on March 24, 2013, which still showed the FDLE markings,” the sheriff’s office said in a statement.

Attempts to reach Wald and his attorney were unsuccessful. He left jail after posting a $15,000 bond.

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