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On August 29, 1974, two sailors from San Diego, Mac and Muff Graham were brutally murdered by Buck Walker and Stephanie Stearns on the island of Palmyra located approximately 970 nautical miles south of Hawaii. Mac was bludgeoned to death aboard the Iola by Buck Walker as he was retrieving his portable generator which he had loaned to Stearns. After killing Mac, Walker leaped into Mac’s dinghy and raced over to the Sea Wind where Stearns sat in the cockpit talking with Muff. When Muff saw Walker round the point in Mac’s dinghy she knew her husband had been murdered. She bolted down the companionway seeking her derringer. Stearns lunged at Muff in an effort to prevent her from obtaining the weapon. There was a struggle as Muff attempted to bring the weapon in a position to fire. During the fight the pistol discharged prematurely with both shots penetrating the hull of the Sea Wind. Shortly thereafter, Walker vaulting down the companionway struck Muff with a blow to the head that sent her writhing to the floor in pain. After she was tied up, Walker returned to the Iola as Stearns brought the Sea Wind around. The Iola was towed off shore a few miles and scuttled with Macs body aboard. Returning to Palmyra, Walker threw Muff into the dinghy and motored over to his camp along with Stearns. In the vicinity of Walker’s camp they both tortured and finally murdered Muff. Throwing her corpse back into the dinghy they motored over to Strawn Island. On the tidal sands they commenced hacking up her corpse and stuffed them into a small aluminum container. Once finished they buried her in the sand while the incoming tide washed away her blood. Years later the remains of Muff were discovered by passing sailors. Walker and Stearns were tried in separate trials for the murder of Muff Graham. After two weeks of trial, Walker was found guilty. Shortly thereafter, Stearns, defended by well known trial lawyer, Vincent Bugliosi, was acquitted. After a careful review of the facts the author, a sailor and trial lawyer himself, disagrees with the jury verdict and argues persuasively the jury erred in their findings. This is a tale of the sea, a derelict sailboat, two sociopaths, mayhem, murder and a gross miscarriage of justice.

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