Christian-Newsom Slayings: State now seeking death for all four suspects

By: Brian Gregory, Rob Pratt
By: Brian Gregory, Rob Pratt

KNOXVILLE, Tenn (WVLT) Knox County prosecutors have made it official. At a hearing this morning they filed death notices against Lemaricus Davidson and George Thomas.

Prosecutors also withdrew motions against both men for hair samples so they could attain DNA samples. They plan to get a search warrant to achieve the same result.

With the death notices filed today, prosecutors will now seek the death penalty against all four suspects in the murders of Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom.

Prosecutors have previously filed death notices against Letalvis Cobbins and Vanessa Coleman.

Also today, attorneys for Thomas filed a request for a speedy trial, asking that his trial be held before the other three suspects. Prosecutors plan to try Cobbins first, and his trial isn't set until next year. A hearing is set for April for a judge to rule on the motion.

All four are charged in a 50+ count indictment describing the brutal rape and murder of Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom in January of 2007, inside a home on Chipman Street in Knoxville. The two had been headed to a party with friends when they were carjacked.

Another man, Eric Dewayne Boyd also faces federal charges for allegedly sheltering Davidson after the murders. Although his trial will be first, he does not face murder charges and prosecutors have not said he was involved in the killings.

Stay connected to Volunteer TV News and for continued coverage of this developing news story.

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