SHELBY COUNTY, TN (WMC) - A former Melrose High School band director may finally face the music. He's accused of sex crimes dating back years and may have moved to Florida to escape prosecution.
Many say Leebrian Walker made the Melrose band something to be proud of during his time leading it from 2011 to 2014.
"He had the band turned around, and performing very well and traveling and he was doing an amazing job," said Claudette Boyd.
Boyd got to know Walker through the annual Orange Mound Parade. She's also a retired Memphis police officer and was shocked to learn Walker was arrested in Fort Pierce, Florida on statutory rape and sexual battery charges.
"I really do hope that these charges are not true," said Boyd. "But I know if they are, that justice has to prevail."
Walker was arrested in Florida when a deputy discovered a warrant out of Memphis during a traffic stop. According to the affidavit, Walker told the deputy he fled Tennessee to avoid the criminal investigation. WMC Action News 5 found out Memphis police started investigating Walker in 2013 regarding inappropriate relationships with male students at Melrose.
"He didn't seem like he would do something like that," said parent Creasha Tucker.
Her son plays in the band and went on a trip with Walker last school year.
"I guess they just went out of town to battle with the other bands or whatever and I never suspected anything," said Tucker.
"You know, I know there's more than one side to each story," said Boyd.
Some hope the band director's story can still end on a positive "note."
Walker was actually teaching band at a Florida school at the time of his arrest. The school district there says he passed a background check because he started before the warrant was issued in Memphis. He should be extradited back to Memphis in the near future.