So it looks like once again, the defense is on the hunt for a particular demographic. Here is the stats for Nashville, where defendant #2 was just convicted.  Nashville , according to this data, is 26% black (check years for accuracy and estimate  pop growth). Chattanooga, mentioned in the WBIR article, is 36% black. The Nashville jury was 6blk, 5 wht, and 1 asian.  Article states the brother of defendant #2, the one who D2 implied was the crazed ringleader of this group wants his trial in Knoxville proper. We shall see how that plays out- he is probably feeling pretty happy his brother didn’t get the death penalty, thinking not that it means that he will carry the burden- but thinking perhaps his jury will also take pity on him.

Of course the brother may also be using a strategy some criminals use out here- they want to get the death penalty because some death row prisons are actually nicer facilities than general population ones- like ‘San Quentin on the Bay’ – they figure the chances of getting killed in the joint in a general population environment are quite high as opposed to the greater security of death row- hence they would rather take the DP, and at least guarantee themselves probably 20 more years than live out their time taking a risk of getting killed every day with lower security and more random inmates, knowing that in general pop, he will be exposed to the white ‘gangs’ such as Aryan Brotherhood as well as the many mexican ones, who also have no love for ghetto thugs. These creatures have done time before, they know how it works.  Dates and locations below.

Judge Richard Baumgartner is heading to Chattanooga to find another jury for an upcoming high profile double murder case that has captivated Knox County. George Thomas is set to go to trial on October 28th. He is accused of torturing and killing Channon Christian and Chris Newsom in January 2007. On Monday morning, Judge Baumgartner will ask about 200 Hamilton County residents to fill out a lengthy questionnaire. They will be polled about their views on the death penalty and if they have been exposed to publicity about the double murders.

Thomas’ attorneys Thomas Dillard and Stephen Johnson, along with Assistant District Attorneys Leland Price and Takisha Fitzgerald will also make the trip to Chattanooga on Monday.
Dillard says they will use the same questionnaire used to poll nearly 170 Nashville jurors in preparation for Cobbins’ trial.
Davidson has asked for a Knox County jury for a Knox County trial. Davidson is expected to go to trial on September 21st. However, Judge Baumgartner told attorneys he believes it could take at least 2 weeks to find a jury. He is unsure what he will do, if he still can’t find a panel after 2 weeks of searching.
Chattanooga demographics and crime stats-
I would  venture to guess a defense atty would be pleased about these numbers, would want a community that is ‘used’ to such things, less horrified and angry.  
If you would like to look up the demographics of Chattanooga,  try epodunk- crime stats  by crime (this may not be recent, be sure to check year)

One thought on “Christian/Newsom: Judge headed to Hamilton County for jury selection

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