Christian-Newsom Murder Trial: Why So Long Before Trial?

By: Kim Bedford
By: Kim Bedford

Knoxville (WVLT) - With the murder suspects not expected to be on trial until at least next May, many are asking why so late?

Volunteer TV’s Kim Bedford takes a look at what goes into preparing for a complex trial like this one.

There are so many details that have to be in place.

Judge Richard Baumgartner is presiding over the case and he tells us everyone on all sides was in agreement on the trial date.

He couldn't speak about the process, so we went to Judge Mary Beth Leibowitz to find out what will most-likely happen between now and next may.

"Sometimes I think it's like choreographing a ballet and making sure everybody's foot's in the right place to do it correctly,” Criminal Court Judge Mary Beth Leibowitz says precision is key for a case like the double-murder carjacking that would rarely go to trial in just a few months. "Most of the time a complex case needs a good six months to get all the information gathered together."

Information, evidence and a lot of different people involved.

"So many defendants, so much complexity to what the D.A.'s office, what the sheriff's department still has yet to do." Judge Leibowitz says calendars for anyone over the murder case will be jam-packed with meeting dates throughout the next year. "You've got to coordinate all the logistics, all the evidence, all the officers who need to testify and all the witnesses who need to testify need to be available."

She also pointed out one thing you may not have noticed, you'll never see a big case like this one take place this fall or next fall.

"You can't set a complex trial during football season because you can't get hotel rooms if a jury is sequestered,” Judge Leibowitz says.

And rushing into four separate trials can come with some major consequences.

"Undiscovered evidence or evidence that wasn't turned over or laboratory analysis that wasn't finished,” Judge Leibowitz says.

Details that the families of Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom will have to painfully wait out.

"It's terribly hard because they're waiting for that day when they have their say or see justice done,” Judge Leibowitz also mentioned that selecting a jury for such a high profile case like the double murder will be a very lengthy process in itself.

But getting everything right and prepared is important on many so many different levels here.

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  • by JW on Aug 16, 2009 at 11:50 PM
    This is a case that the justice system is broken. A swift trial and death penalty to all of them. Perhaps the same way they killed the victims. The poor families that have to endure all the hurt and aftermath of this heinous crime and I might add HATE crime. We are wasting time and tax payers dollars on these thugs, do society a favor an end it for all of them NOW!
  • by Ananymous Location: new york on Aug 9, 2009 at 06:43 PM
    I wonder what thier priors look like?
  • by J.C. Location: Harriman on Nov 5, 2008 at 09:10 AM
    would love to be on this Jury
  • by untitled Location: maryville on Sep 30, 2008 at 10:18 PM
    it doesn;t matter if they are black or white, they need to be took out and hung. my heart goes out to these families. iknow what you are going through . ifeel your hurt. vegence is the lord, he says they should be put to death
  • by A Location: Human Being on Jun 8, 2008 at 01:00 PM
    This pattern of releasing hardened, violent felons to prey upon the weak and unsuspecting people in our society must stop. It simply must. HEre is another ex-felon who tied a 23 yr old college student to her futon, raped, tortured, and sodomized her for 18 hours, cut her eyelids with a knife, poured bleach into her eyes, boiling water to blister her skin and then left her for dead. Our government is abandoning us. wcbstv(DOT)com/topstories/robert.williams.arrest.2.243701.html Meanwhile, senator lieberman is working hard on a NEW LAW to RESTORE CRIMINAL'S MEDICARE BENEFITS WHILE THEY ARE IN JAIL. Why are the people we elect not working on saving American jobs, or punishing the human cockroaches that infest our cities? Why are they focused on rights for criminals??? Will we just continue to take this until our daughter or our son is carjacked, raped, and murdered by ANOTHER EX-FELON????
  • by leah Location: knoxville tn on Apr 10, 2008 at 05:13 PM
    the rage that consumes me about this is something I can't explain. My daughter knew Christian and even after all this time I still don't know how to answer her questions. The pictures of these 4 which I can't even call "people" bring an emotion in me I didn't know I could experience. As I'm writing this comment the local news is covering the events in court today. Seeing their faces in the news makes me want to see them dead. I know now I am not the christian I thought I was and don't even want to ask to be forgiven for the way I'm feeling. The expression on Boyd's face is emotionless or maybe it's fear. I can only hope. I wonder how much of a swagger the other supects will have when ther're are finally brought to trial. I wonder how impowered the rest of them will feel when their asses are close to death. I only wish I could be there for that.
  • by Zara Location: LAs Vegas on Apr 9, 2008 at 01:01 AM
    Shame on the National Media. I am truly touched and haunted by faces of two beautiful souls I nver met. WHY WHY WHY I don't think that this STARTED as a "hate crime" but that IS how it ended!! If not for race, sex then HATRED shear hatred and direagrd for this man and woman. How dare they? These animals are PARENTS do they want this to happen to their children, their sisters, mothers?? Do they even have the ability to care? I am not an advocate for the Death penalty normally...but this crime AND crimes against innocent children should end in death!!! God should have mercy on their souls (wonder how many are finding God and getting saved in jail?) I have been in is sad ... these animals will be looked up to by the black inmates and hated by the racists! They don't deserve OUR tax money to make them comfortable!
  • by ken Location: colorado on Apr 8, 2008 at 02:10 PM
    i saw a movie documentary called "faces of death" long time ago. there is this part the movie where family members of a murder victim were given the "opportunity" to cast judgement to the killer. in this case, the brother of the deceased was asked to stand infront of the killer, pointed a gun to his forehead then shot him to death. for these 4 evil savaged people, they should suffer what they have done to channon and chris, then let their family finish off their punishment.
  • by Location: massachuesttes on Apr 6, 2008 at 08:13 AM
    in responce to the lack of coverage by the "news" medias of a crime that if the role of the races were reversed would be aired constanly start contacting the advertisers on the "news" medias channels and the "news' medias them selves and let them know that youll be deleting their stations and canceling your subscriptions if their not going to report it they same way they would if the roles were reversed ( and i dont mean a passing referance at 4a.m.)
  • by Rick Location: Lexington on Mar 3, 2008 at 03:22 PM
    Funny, I can't remember seeing Jessie Jackson or Al Sharpton anywhere near these trogladytes. I wonder why? Maybe there is no money or face time in it for either of them.


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