John Derbyshire: Justice Delayed Twelve Years In Knoxville Horror Slayings
Print Friendly and PDF

See, earlier, Do We Have Government Of Laws, Or Not?  and Unequal Justice In New York: Sheldon Silver Still Free

Here's more justice delayed, the delay in this case being twelve years.

The crime that calls for justice here is the one our own Nicholas Stix calls the Knoxville Horror: the killing of sweethearts Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom, aged 21 and 23, in Knoxville, Tennessee back in January 2007.

This was an exceptionally horrific crime. The young couple were kidnapped, raped, tortured, and killed by a gang of at least five assailants.

The details are difficult to read about. If you think you can stomach them, a site search for Nicholas's articles at gives comprehensive coverage.

The victims were white, though, the assailants black, so mainstream media suppressed the story as well as they could. Nicholas has covered all that in detail, too. The media malfeasance in this case is as shocking as the nature of the crime itself, although of course in a different way: morally, not physically, disgusting.

Four of the assailants were brought to state trial and a fifth, Eric Boyd, to federal trial as an accessory after the fact, for helping one of the killers hide out. The whole trial process was shambolic, though, with procedural issues, judges being replaced, jurors bused in from majority-black counties, vacated verdicts and retrials. The guiding principle behind all these shenanigans was, says Nicholas: "It ain't over 'til the black felon wins!"

Eventually there was a measure of justice. The four assailants brought to state trial were convicted: one death penalty, one life without parole, one 127-year sentence, one for 35 years. Eric Boyd, tried in federal court as an accessory, got 18 years.

Then last year George Thomas, who got the 127-year sentence, agreed to testify that Boyd was involved in the killings, in return for having the 127 years reduced to fifty. Eric Boyd was brought to state trial. Ten days ago he was convicted of first-degree murder, with two automatic life sentences for the two killings. [Jury finds Eric Boyd guilty of grisly 2007 Knoxville murders,  by Jamie Satterfield, Knoxville News Sentinel, August 13, 2019]

That's twelve and a half years on from the crime; twelve and a half years of unimaginable mental anguish for the families of Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom. If the youngsters had married, as everyone thought they would, they'd now be in their mid-thirties with kids in school.

Justice delayed? I'd say so.

The contrast here, going back to the previous two items, the contrast is between who justice is delayed for and who it is not delayed for.

That endless procedural wrangling we're seeing in Sheldon Silver's case: Why was there nothing like that in Steve Stockman's?

Or compare the years-long clown show to get the Knoxville killers convicted with the case of James Fields, accused of killing a protestor in the Charlottesville Antifa riot two years ago. Fields' trials went by so fast, if you blinked you'd have missed them.

We're a nation of laws, not of men … unless the man—and woman, in the case of Obama's Auntie Zeituni—is connected to the powerful, and preferably black. Our justice is delayed, and delayed, and delayed—unless you're a white person with unpopular opinions; then it's wonderfully brisk.

This is Who We Are.

Print Friendly and PDF