Families reflect on 3 year anniversary of Christian-Newsom murders

Families reflect on 3 year anniversary of Christian-Newsom murders


6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) -- Three years ago, Channon Christian and her boyfriend, Chris Newsom, were carjacked, raped and murdered. Now, their families are reflecting on life without them and the continuing battle for convictions.

In October 2009, LeMaricus Davidson was given the death penalty for his role in the slayings.

Davidson's half-brother, Letalvis Cobbins, was convicted in August and sentenced to life without parole.

Cobbins' friend, George Thomas, was convicted in December and also sentenced to life without parole.

But the fight in court is far from over. The trial of the fourth suspect, Vanessa Coleman, is set to begin in May.

The victims' family members hope murder charges will be brought against Eric Boyd, the man who was convicted in 2008 as an accessory in this case. He was sentenced to 18 years in prison.

On Thursday, 6 News visited the Newsoms at their home in the Halls area. Chris' parents showed us his bedroom. Everything from Chris' baseball caps, trophies and clothes are all displayed.

"It has been a long three years and it hasn't gotten any easier. It's never going to go away what happened and how it happened. It's just something you will never forget, especially this time of year. It just makes it that much harder," said Chris' mother, Mary Newsom.

"There is not one hour that goes by that I haven't thought about Chris and Channon, not one. But you still have to go on. It's still left up to you to continue on," said Chris' father, Hugh Newsom.

The Christian family and friends met at Channon's burial site on the snowy day. Flowers and a teddy bear adorned her grave.

"We miss her and there isn't that much to do than to come out here with friends and family to remember the good stuff, or at least try to," said Channon's father, Gary Christian.

He also remembered how much Channon loved the snow. "She loved the snow and playing in it. I know what she would be doing and we wish she could."

If the couple were alive, Chris would have been 27 and Channon would have been 25.

Both families say they envision every day what the couple's lives would be if they were still alive.

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