Christian-Newsom accessory trial well underway after first full day of testimony

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Emotional words from a friend of Channon Christian, 21, and Christopher Newsom, 23, began the first full day of testimony in Eric DeWayne Boyd's accessory trial.

Today was a day when prosecutors used friends and witnesses to try to link Boyd to the four people charged in the murders.

Testimony is offering jurors a glimpse of how what was supposed to be a fun weekend turned into suffering and death.

Channon Christian's best friend for 14 years is the first to offer tearful testimony.

Kara Sowards spent Saturday, January 6, 2007 with Channon, expecting her and Chris Newsom to meet up with several friends that night.

When they failed to show, friends went from believing the couple wanted time alone, to worrying about them. The next day they joined the families in a street-by-street search, finding Channon's Toyota parked near Lemaricus Davidson's home on Chipman Street.

Another witness says he saw the same Toyota in that area while he was working nearby, on the night prosecutors say the carjacking occurred. He says four black people were in it, and also claims he saw a white car there that night. Eric Boyd's aunt testified she loaned a car of the same model to Boyd around that time.

Boyd is not charged with the murder or the carjacking, instead he's on trial for allegedly hiding Davidson.

One witness, Ethel Lynn Freeman, says she talked to Davidson on the telephone, in the early morning hours Sunday. That's when prosecutors say Channon was being repeatedly raped inside Davidson's home.

The witness says she told Davidson, "You don't sound like yourself, and you need to calm down before you give yourself a heart attack."

Lemaricus Davidson is not yet on trial, but prosecutors must still prove he committed a crime before they can convict Boyd of anything.

Police say they found Davidson after finding his fingerprint inside Channon's vehicle. They say the fingerprint was on file, because Davidson had a previous carjacking conviction from 2001.

Eric Boyd federal trial continues Friday.


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