Sunday, October 25, 2009

Second Christian-Newsom Torture-Murder Trial: The Prosecution Rests


On Saturday, the state rested its case in the second Christian-Newsom torture-murder trial after defense failed to make a dent in the cross-examination of the medical examiner. The defense still insists that the defendant, Lemaricus Davidson, had "consensual vaginal sex" with Channon Christian. The defense began its case with the two most dubious witnesses I can remember.

The first, Ethel Lynn Freeman, who testified for the state in the Cobbins trial in August. At that time said that Davidson was "out of breath" when Freeman called him at 3 AM on that Sunday morning. Freeman is a friend of Davidson's and was his neighbor on Chipman Street. Davidson and company helped her move to the Washington Ridge Apartments in December 2006. Freeman testified last August that she was expecting Davidson to come by around 10:30 PM Saturday January 6, 2007 to bring her some money.

Today as a defense witness, Freeman said she saw Christian and Newsom at a gas station on Cherry Street between 9:30 PM and 10:00 PM that same night. "Channon had said that she ran out of gas and asked me if I had any money to give them because they were trying to get to Jefferson City or Johnson City," Freeman told the court.

However, Newsom pulled $100 from his bank account that night, and the Christian family said they paid for her gas as Channon was still a college student. "That Four Runner never saw half empty," Gary Christian said. Gary Christian also said that when Four Runner's run out of gas they cannot just restart.

After Freeman's testimony, the jurors asked what Freeman was doing at the gas station. She didn't have an answer and was defensive. The jury was skeptical. Tennessee jurors can ask questions of witnesses.

The defense then called a neighbor of Davidson's named Jeffrey Bradley who said he was looking for his mother's cat at 10 PM on January 6, 2007. Bradley said that he saw Davidson and two white girls get out of a Grand Am between 9:30 and 10:00 that night. He claims one of the girls was Channon Christian.

This is the same night and time period when Freeman supposedly saw Christian and Newsom at the Cherry Street gas station in a SUV.

During cross, Bradley didn't do well. He has a long rap sheet and admitted to being a thief. Earlier this week, one Stacey Lawson testified she left the Chipman Street house on January 2, 2007 in her teal Grand AM.

One would think that if these are the best witnesses the defense can produce, they have no case at all.

On Monday, Davidson will announce whether he is going to take the stand. The defense has still another druggie witness whom they want to place Davidson with one of the victims. This witness is trying to have the subpoena crushed for "her personal safety." They are also going to call a witness regarding the two unknown DNA samples in Channon's underwear.

Closing arguments will then take place and the jury is expected to get the case on Monday evening.

The defense case is that Christian and Newsom were druggies and Channon came with her boyfriend to Chipman Street to buy drugs and have consensual sex with a thug like Davidson, who is supposed to have left the house while the murders took place. How did his fingerprints and hand prints get on the trash bags holding her body? Why was Davidson barefoot with Newsom's shoes in the room when he was arrested? Just two of many questions one could ask.

The source for the above is WBIR, the Knoxville NBC station, along with my own viewing of the live stream.

Here again is my first article outlining the case. This is what the defense wants the jury to forget.

David From Tennessee

Thank you so much David, for covering this case for T&T's readers. It's very much appreciated. Sprocket


Anonymous said...

David, you left out the part where the ME is showing autopsy phots of Channon, it had jurors(at least two) in tears and an assistant DA fainted. The courtroom was cleared and testimony resumed in about 30 minutes. Friday testimony ended shortly after that.
Saturday morning the defense asked for a mistrial! Apparently the evidence of what he did was unfair and too predicial and thus whole case should be thrown out. Not the way the judge saw it but he did tell the jury to ignore the reactions to the evidence.
Again, thanks for giving me the heads up regarding the streaming of this has been great to watch. The prosecutor Ms. Fitzgerald one of the best....and the ME was outstanding.
Best part listening to the jury questions. This guy is never going to be free again.I think deliberation will take about two hours.

September moo

Liz said...

How on earth could anyone not react to that evidence. It was good to hear the ME continually stress the ferocity of the attack - although I can't imagine this is what the families of the victims would wish to hear.

I applaud the jury that they are still functioning normally after having to sit through such evidence. 100 witnesses could say the sex was consensual, but no-one could possibly consent to what was done to this couple.

I don't believe in the death penalty, but this case stretches one's values almost to changing point.

Anonymous said...

Ethel Freeman is a liar and should be put in prison with the rest of the sick freaks! She is a sicko to get on the stand and lie! She is just as bad as the other four! POS!

Anonymous said...

But Ethel supports breast cancer research! LOL

Closings this pm.

September moo

Anonymous said...

The defense strategy is to take the focus off the torture-murders. It is now up to the prosecutors to hammer home the facts in their closing argument and rebuttal.

David From TN

Anonymous said...

Ms. Fitzgerald sure did just that she really hammered home the facts. She mocked the defense by using the facts to destroy it was a drug deal gone bad defense. It really was an excellent closing of the best. No notes she talked to the jury from the heart. Gold medal performance.

September moo

Anonymous said...

The jury just reached a verdict. GUILTY ON ALL MAJOR COUNTS. Guilty of BOTH murders, which did not happen in the Cobbins trial.

David From TN