KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Vanessa Coleman's retrial for her role in the murders of Channon Christian and Chris Newsom continues into day three. Click here to watch live stream
Tuesday's testimony got emotional as the mothers of both victims took the stand. While neither directly implicated Coleman in the crime, they were able to connect with the jury, explain exactly what happened and give a window into how Coleman might be connected.
The day started with more expert testimony and more evidence, but jurors heard very little about Coleman during that testimony. Gary Christian, Channon's father, shook in his seat during a particularly tedious hour; meanwhile, jurors began to drift off at some points. But when Deena Christian took the stand, things picked up. She told the jury about the night her daughter went missing, and was then asked to look through a purse that was found in Coleman's possession after Channon was killed. Inside was Christian's empty wallet, her handbag, and several other personal items.
Deena Christian's testimony got even more emotional when she told the jury how desperate she was to find her daughter. "When her daddy got up at 6 I told him that she didnt come home and she wasn't answering her phone... We were walking the train tracks on Chipman Street, we were searching through abandoned buildings. We were trying anything to find our daughter."
Jurors also saw pictures of the Chipman Street home where Christian's body was found, and they heard from one of the girls who lived there.
Daphne Sutton was Lemaricus Davidson's girlfriend and knew Coleman. She actually went to the house while Channon was blindfolded inside, hours before she was killed, and wasn't allowed to leave the living room.
"They didn't want me to go through there," Sutton testified. "I was wondering why I couldn't go anywhere else."
Sutton said the house was so small, she could hear everything. She also testified to the fact that Coleman was there around the same time she was, and that Coleman knew Davidson was violent. Prosecutors are using the testimony as background for when they call Coleman's own police interviews, to reinforce what they say should be a guilty verdict.
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