David Walthall’s life has been a bit of a roller coaster ride lately.
An in-home nurse, Walhall gained a few minutes of viral video fame when a man allegedly blamed him and other healthcare workers for the coronavirus as they rode a Red Line train in July 2020.
Then, one year ago, Walthall received attention for a much different reason: Prosecutors charged him with burglary after police allegedly caught him red-handed as he crawled out of a broken window and walked down the fire escape of a high-rise on the 300 block of West Fullerton with a bag of burglarized loot that included a rifle. They also charged him with a burglary on the 400 block of West Roslyn because his ID was allegedly found inside the victim’s home.
A few weeks ago, Walthall put all of that behind him by pleading guilty to two counts of residential burglary in exchange for two years of TASC probation — a program for defendants who have substance abuse issues.
But the roller coaster ride wasn’t over.
On Tuesday, Walthall, 41, was in felony bond court again as prosecutors charged him with another count of residential burglary.
Chicago police recently received DNA tests back on some blood they recovered last January inside another burglarized home in the same neighborhood where Walthall’s two break-ins occurred. Prosecutors said the DNA matches Walthall.
The victims were on vacation on January 12 last year when a neighbor noticed the rear fire escape was down, their lights were on, and their rear glass door was broken, prosecutors said. Police found blood throughout the apartment, and the couple’s safe lying on a sidewalk near their home on the 2400 block of North Lakeview.
Prosecutors said the couple lost watches, earrings, and other valuables worth $272,000 in the burglary.
Last year, prosecutors said Walthall sold earrings and necklaces taken in other burglaries to pawnshops.
Private defense attorney Jonathan Feldman said Walthall is overcoming addiction that resulted from his work as a healthcare worker during COVID.
If the crime lab tests had not been delayed for a year, the burglary case might have been rolled in with the other two that Walthall received probation for, Feldman noted.
But Judge Kelly McCarthy was not persuaded. Using the victims’ alleged losses as a guide, McCarthy set Walthall’s bail at $200,000 cash. That means Walthall must post the full bail amount to get out of jail, not the typical 10% deposit. McCarthy also ordered Walthall to go on electronic monitoring if he posts bail.
When Walthall appeared before two different judges for bail hearings on burglary charges last year, they both released him on his own recognizance.