Pilot pleads not guilty in triple murder case

A industrial airline pilot was once arraigned Wednesday on three counts of murder stemming from the brutal 2015 killings of three of his neighbors, at the side of two whose bodies were found burned past recognition in a torched automobile.

Christian R. “Kit” Martin, Fifty one, a inclined Navy Ranger most most critical and a pilot for the American Airways subsidiary PSA Airways, made his first look in Christian County Justice Middle in Hopkinsville, Kentucky. He was once arrested on Might possibly 11 at the Muhammad Ali Global Airport in Louisville and pulled off an airplane fats of passengers lawful sooner than it was once location for takeoff.

Martin, carrying an orange prison jumpsuit with the words “Christian County Jail” written on the aid, was once introduced into the court docket shackled and stood in entrance of the bench of Indulge in John L. Atkins to be arraigned in the killings of Calvin and Pamela Phillips and their neighbor, Edward Dansereau.

Martin’s licensed knowledgeable, Michael Thompson, entered pleas of now not guilty on behalf of Martin and waived a proper studying of the funds.

Besides to to the three counts of murder, Martin was once arraigned on funds of first-stage burglary, first-stage arson and tampering with physical evidence. If convicted of the funds, he would possibly presumably well even face the loss of life penalty.

PHOTO: Christian R. Martin, a pilot for the American Airways subsidiary PSA, regarded a Kentucky court docket on Might possibly 22, 2019, and was once arraigned on three counts of murder and arson stemming from the 2015 killings of his neighbors.WHAS-TV
Christian R. Martin, a pilot for the American Airways subsidiary PSA, regarded a Kentucky court docket on Might possibly 22, 2019, and was once arraigned on three counts of murder and arson stemming from the 2015 killings of his neighbors.

Atkins ordered Martin to come reduction to court on July 10 for a preliminary hearing and to remain in prison without bail.

Relatives of Calvin and Pamela Phillips, at the side of their son, Matt Phillips, attended Wednesday’s hearing but did now not focus on to reporters afterward.

Kentucky Licensed knowledgeable Overall Andy Beshear acknowledged at a files convention earlier this month that his place of job took over the investigation after Matt Phillips met with him two years ago and expressed fears the case would possibly presumably well even by no manner be solved.

At the time of the slayings, Martin lived all over the boulevard from the Phillips couple and Dansereau.

In a 2016 interview with NBC affiliate living WSMV-TV in Louisville, Martin claimed Calvin Phillips was once having an affair alongside with his wife but denied any involvement in the murders.

Requested in the interview if he believed he would be charged in the killings, Martin told WSMV, “No, I blueprint now not personal any worries about that.”

Martin allegedly broke into the Phillips’ dwelling in Pembroke, Kentucky, on Nov. 18, 2015, and fatally shot Calvin Phillips with a .forty five caliber pistol, an indictment filed against him alleges. That identical day, he allegedly shot and killed Pamela Phillips and Dansereau with a .22 caliber firearm, in step with the indictment.

PHOTO: This undated portray offered by the Christian County Detention Middle shows Christian R. Martin. Christian County Detention Middle through AP, FILE
This undated portray offered by the Christian County Detention Middle shows Christian R. Martin.

Martin allegedly put the bodies of Dansereau and Pamela Phillips in a automobile and drove correct into a cornfield plenty of miles from their neighborhood, the get aside he location the auto on fire with the victims’ bodies within, in step with the indictment.

The killings happened lawful days sooner than Martin faced a military court-martial on funds of sexual assault, child abuse and habits unbecoming an officer, in step with military files.

Calvin Phillips was once anticipated to testify at Martin’s court-martial complaints, acknowledged Martin’s inclined licensed knowledgeable, Tucker Richardson.

Richardson told ABC Nashville affiliate WKRN earlier this month that Phillips was once going to be the defense’s “star query” in the court-martial hearing.

“If their motive is he killed Calvin Phillips ‘motive he was once going to testify in his upcoming court-martial, properly that was once nothing further than the truth,” Richardson told WKRN.

Martin was once in the wreck found guilty on lesser funds of mishandling categorised files and straightforward assault, in step with Richardson. He was once dismissed from the military and positioned beneath “confinement for ninety days,” in step with the files.

Martin’s fiancée and daughter furthermore defended him, announcing he is harmless.

“He’s an graceful man,” Martin’s fiancée, Laura Spencer, acknowledged in an interview this month with ABC living WTVD-TV in Durham, North Carolina. “So his family and I personal he is one hundred% harmless.”

Martin’s daughter, McKenzie, furthermore expressed fortify for her father, telling ABC Knowledge in a assertion, “My dad is an American hero.”

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