Lemaricus Davidson guilty on all murder counts

By: Mike McCarthy & Michael Grider Email
By: Mike McCarthy & Michael Grider Email

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Sentencing in the Lemaricus Davidson double murder trial begins at 9:00 a.m. on Thursday morning.

Jurors found Davidson guilty on all counts against him on Wednesday afternoon, except the three aggravated rape counts involving Christopher Newsom. On those three charges, the jury found Davidson guilty of the lesser-included offense of facilitation of aggravated rape.



List of verdicts against Davidson

Because Davidson was found guilty on several first degree murder and first degree felony murder charges, a sentencing hearing will move forward Thursday. At which time, both sides will put on more proof, with prosecutors arguing that Davidson should be put to death, and the defense trying to spare his life. The jury must be unanimous in their decision that Davidson should face the death penalty before he can be sentenced to death.

"We finally have the justice that these kids deserves," Chris Newsom's mother, Mary Newsom, said after the verdict was read.

"Chris and Channon were the victims in this murder, and they should have never been put on trial," Channon Christian's mother, Deena Christian said., "and I can't say this in a court of law, but they did not deserve to be put on trial, they didn't do anything wrong, and today they got justice."

Because Davidson was found guilty of killing both Christian and Newsom--unlike his half brother, Letalvis Cobbins, who was not convicted of killing Newsom--the Newsom family will get to share their victim impact statements with the jury during the sentencing hearing Thursday.

Asked about the possible sentences in the case, Channon's father, Gary Christian, said, "Death, Death, Death."

"Two down, two more to go. Hopefully three," Deena Christian said.

"(Eric) Boyd ain't over," Gary Christian said.

"We go out to Chris' cemetery, out by Chris' grave, and talk to him after every trial," Christopher Newsom's father, Hugh Newsom, said.

Earlier in the day, while the jury was still deliberating, Gary and Deena Christian addressed the media, expressing their frustrations with defense attorneys and the media concerning defense attorney claims that their children used drugs and the way media reported that information.

Gary Christian said the U.S. Constitution has been distorted and defense attorneys attempted "to drag our children through the mud, attempt to make them into dope dealers and hookers. And in a court of law, my wife does not have the right to say that our children should not have been put on trial. The truth must really hurt."

The Christian's also took issue with the defense's suggestion that Channon may have had consensual sex with Davidson.

"Over my dead body. The next person that says out of their mouth that my daughter had consensual sex with him, ain't got but one person in this world to deal with, and that's me," Christian said. "Over my dead body."

The Christians say they also have proof--drug screen results from Channon's employment--that their daughter was not on drugs.

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- The jury finds Lemaricus Davidson guilty of the aggravated rape of Channon Christian.

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- The jury finds Lemaricus Davidson guilty of facilitation of rape in all rape counts against him involving Christopher Newsom. Facilitation of rape is a lesser-included charge stemming from the initial aggravated rape charges against him.

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- The jury finds Lemaricus Davidson guilty of first degree murder in the deaths of both Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom.

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- The jury finds Lemaricus Davidson guilty of first degree felony murder in the killing of Channon Christina and Chris Newsom. Those charges are death penalty eligible.

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- The jury has reached a verdict in the Lemaricus Davidson murder trial.

Volunteer TV News and VolunteerTV.com will carry the verdict live, in its entirety on the air and streaming on our Web channel. You can also watch a live feed from the courtroom on VolunteerTV.com, and get courtroom updates from Mike McCarthy on Twitter by following @WVLT.

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- A Knox County jury has begun reviewing the entire police interrogation of accused killer Lemaricus Davidson.

"Is there any way when we're watching this, you can zoom in on Mr. Davidson?," a male juror asked.

The judge said that wasn't possible.

Jurors began deliberating Davidson's fate Tuesday afternoon, but ended the day without a verdict.

The jury re watched a portion of the more than two hour interrogation inside the courtroom.

Judge Richard Baumgartner said it would be better for the jury to watch the video on the courtroom big screen to ensure the equipment works properly.

"I want to make sure the jury sees what we see," Baumgartner said.

Davidson's defense team objected to the video being replayed in open courtroom.

"This is part of jury deliberations, and it's not appropriate for jury deliberations to occur in open courtroom," defense attorney David Eldridge argued.

Judge Baumgartner said the exhibit is too large to take into the jury room, and no attorneys will be allowed to question jurors.

Davidson is the accused ringleader in the January 2007 carjacking, rape, and murder of Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom.

Officers interrogated Davidson after his arrest at a vacant Reynolds Street house on January 11, 2007.

"Selling dope, that's I do sell dope. I don't kill people though," Davidson told KPD Investigator Ryan Flores.

Davidson's changes his story throughout the questioning.

He first denies any knowledge of what happened to couple.

"I ain't never see the girl in my life or the dude," Davidson said, "I had never seen them before in my life."

However, he later told police co-defendants Letalvis Cobbins and George Thomas carjacked the couple and brought them back to his Chipman Street house.

"They came to the house. They already had the car and everything....They had both of them in the backseat tied up...I'm telling them, 'man, y'all stupid," Davidson said.

Davidson told police he only "bumped up against [Christian] a couple times," but later said Christian grabbed his arm.

"She says, I don't want to die," Davidson said.

In closing arguments, Davidson's defense team has argued Christian and Newsom weren't carjacked, but instead went to the Chipman Street area to buy drugs.

Eldridge argued Davidson introduced the couple to the "gang from Kentucky", referring the Cobbins, Thomas, and Vanessa Coleman.

The defense blames the murders on the trio and argued Davidson wasn't around for crimes.

Eldridge argued Davidson lied to police out fear after being arrested by what the defense called, "a small army."

"He's a known drug dealer with a gun. He knows the police and the public was upset," Eldridge told the jury Tuesday.

But Assistant District Attorney Leland Price described Davidson a desperate days before the crimes against the couple.

"He had no job. He had no money. He had no ride," Price said. "[Davidson] went out with his partners in crime and he took it from those two young people, took everything they had and was ever going to have and he kept it for himself."

Davidson faces the death penalty if he's convicted of first degree murder.

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Jury deliberations are set to resume Wednesday morning in the double murder trial of Lemaricus Davidson.

Davidson is charged with the January 2007 carjacking, kidnapping, rape and murder of Channon Christian, 21, and Christopher Newsom, 23.

Volunteer TV's Mike McCarthy as at the courthouse awaiting the jury's verdict. Volunteer TV News and VolunteerTV.com will carry the verdict live, in its entirety on the air and streaming on our Web channel. You can also watch a live feed from the courtroom on VolunteerTV.com, and get courtroom updates from Mike McCarthy on Twitter by following @WVLT.


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  • by DARKRIDER Location: DIRTY SOUTH on Dec 15, 2009 at 04:08 PM
    FINALLY JUSTICE IS SERVED WELL KINDA I THINK THEY SHOULD TAKE DAVIDSON OUT WITH THE VICTIMS FAMILYS INTO THE DEEP WOODS AND DO WHAT THEY CHOOSE DEATH IS TO GOOD FOR THAT COWARD MAKE HIM SUFFER LIKE HE DID THOSE YOUNG INNOCENT KIDS AND AS FAR AS FAR AS LISTENING TO THAT COWARDS FAMILY HISTORY WHO CARES THEY RAISED A BIG SISSY THAT PREYED ON GOOD PEOPLE WISH HE WOULD HAVE CAME TO MY YARD FIRST THOSE KIDS WOULD STILL BE HERE! TO THE VICTIMS FAMILYS MY THOUGHTS ARE WITH YOU EVERY DAY I HAVE THREE CHILDREN AND I CANT IMAGINE WHAT YOU ARE GOING THROUGH BUT IM SORRY
  • by Teresa Location: Knoxville on Oct 30, 2009 at 12:36 PM
    Anonymous in Knoxville: you have no idea how many years I have put into studying the law, medicine, child behavior and the Bible. So, I don't think you are arguing with ignorance. I believe you can't argue with the TRUTH. You have a blessed day as well.
  • by anonymous Location: Knoxville on Oct 30, 2009 at 09:10 AM
    Teresa- clearly you don't know or understand our legal system and there is no point in arguing with ignorance. I wish you a blessed day.
  • by Teresa Location: Knoxville on Oct 29, 2009 at 09:35 PM
    To anonymous in Knoxville, if WE all are quite sure that these monsters are guilty, don't you think that these lawyers are sure as well? I should hope so, or it reflects on their intelligence. Also, you say that they go on these FALSE stories that their clients give them. Don't you think it would make them look much smarter if they actually checked out the stories first. None of their clients LIES has been substantiated by any way shape form or fashion. Seriously, If I am a lawyer of ANY KIND, I WOULD CHECK OUT MY CLIENTS STORIES FIRST, to keep from looking like an IDIOT, and I'm not saying that's what they are, just that they allow their CLIENTS to make them out to be, by going on their clients stories without checking them out first. Surely to God if a lawyer finds that his client is lying to him, then he would have the right to go to the courts and remove himself from that case. So clearly, YOU don't know what YOU are talking about!! It is morally wrong to represent these liars!!!!!!
  • by Anonymous Location: Alcoa on Oct 29, 2009 at 04:10 PM
    I believe we should rush the death penalty rather than waiting 15 to twenty years. Why wait on the obvious. Better yet let Mr Christian have them to do as he pleases.
  • by Teresa Location: New Market on Oct 29, 2009 at 02:52 PM
    I think they should put Davidson and the parents of the children that were killed in a lock barn and just see who comes out. My money is on the parents. That would be justice!!
  • by Ruthie Location: Nashville TN on Oct 29, 2009 at 01:39 PM
    Now we have to listen to the history of not only the murderer, but his uncle's family history, his mother's family history...on and on and on. If I was on the jury, I'd be angry at this waste of time!
  • by anonymous Location: Knoxville on Oct 29, 2009 at 09:39 AM
    There is no doubt that these monsters committed these crimes! Teresa, defense attorneys only have the defense their clients provide them. Its not as if the attorneys made these stories up. I completely believe them to be false stories but they are the ones provided by their clients. In reference to them "choosing" their profession- if you were wrongfully accused would you not want someone good to defend you? Unfortunately, they have to deal with the truly horrible as well to save the ones that deserve it. How dare YOU accuse them of having no morals! You have no idea what these cases do to these attorneys and their families because of the choice they made to enter this profession to help the ones that do deserve it. Clearly, you don't know what you are talking about!
  • by Rob on Oct 29, 2009 at 08:15 AM
    AMEN!!
  • by Bob Location: Va on Oct 29, 2009 at 07:15 AM
    So many people are against the defense lawyers. They did not choose to defend him but they were given that duty. They cannot do a bad job for their client. If they do it will be a mistrial. They have to try and get him off. I believe these men and lady are guilty as sin and should be put to death but I have no hate toward their lawyers. They are doing their job to the best of their ability the same as we should be doing our jobs the best of our ability. I have a very good friend who is a lawyer and sometimes I have seen him almost cry because of a case he has been given. I would have a hard time respecting him if he did not do the best he could in defending him. The state must prove guilt.

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