Chris grew up in Grand Bay, Alabama with his mother and father and two older brothers. His father, Eugene, and his mother , Charlotte, were wonderful parents and provided for Chris and his brothers a stable and happy childhood.
Chris and his wife Emily were married in December of 2014, and shortly afterward, Chris heard the call to follow his father and brother into the service of his country. Chris was inducted into the U.S. Army in the summer of 2015 and completed his training as a Combat Medic in spring of 2016. Chris and Emily were then stationed at Fort Campbell, Tennessee where Chris continued to train and serve his country honorably.
Chris and his wife Emily had twin girls on February 20, 2017, named Caroline and Adeline. It was the happiest day of Chris’ life. Everyone was so excited and delighted to welcome them into the world! They were premature however and had to stay in the NICU for 6 weeks after they were born. The army allowed Chris to have some time off to look after his family until they were out of the NICU. Chris and his wife were there at the hospital with them every day. When they were sent home, the girls still needed some medical attention and Chris went to most of their doctor visits week after week. These little girls were very loved by both of their parents. Chris was a wonderful dad. He took his family on outings, he brought them to church, he cared for them, and protected them. He loved his girls more than words can express.
Chris had just taken his family on a 2-day vacation to Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains and when they returned home, he and his wife fed and bathed the girls and put them to bed. The next morning, November 14, 2017 Chris woke up at 4:00am and prepared to report for duty at his station at Fort Campbell. His wife woke up with him and fixed his breakfast. He left home to report for duty around 4:30am. Around 7:00am, his wife went in to get the babies up and feed them breakfast and found that Adeline had gotten the dehumidifier cord wrapped around her arm and neck during the night. Adeline’s motor skills were developing quicker than Caroline’s and she had just started to crawl and grab things. She had gotten hold of the cord in the middle of the night. It was a horrific and tragic accident.
After a panic call to 911 and performing CPR, Emily called Chris at Fort Campbell. When he arrived at the hospital he was in such a hurry to get into the hospital that he left his car door open. He ran as fast as he could into the hospital, and a detective met him there. The detective told him that they would need him at the police station to answer some questions. They took his wife straight from their home to the police station, also. They were not allowed to see each other. At a time when they needed each other, when they needed to grieve together, to hold each other, they were kept separated to grieve alone for their little girl! Department of Children’s Services took their other baby straight from their home. The investigators accused them both of killing their baby. Chris and Emily were devastated to the point of despair.
Chris was very respectful to the investigators. He had learned to be respectful as a child and the army also taught him to show respect. He has never had any encounter with the police. He did not know that the police would lie to him. He didn’t know to ask for a lawyer because he knew that he had done nothing wrong. He was expecting that he would answer a few questions and then be allowed to go to his wife to grieve for his baby girl. However, when he arrived in the interrogation room, the police accused Chris not only of killing his daughter but they accused him of raping her too, despite an utter lack of evidence to substantiate that charge! Because of his mental state of grief, the police decided that Chris had to be guilty. (Current police interrogation methods demand that police officers assume that the questioned person is guilty until proven innocent. This is exactly opposite from the principle of human dignity upon which this country was founded.) The police locked Chris in a tiny room as he grieved for his baby girl. They subjected him to psychological torture techniques designed to bully, intimidate, confuse, and exhaust him. They told Chris many lies in order to break him. They told Chris that they knew for sure that he had raped and strangled his baby girl. They told Chris that Emily had accused him of rape. The police made Chris feel as though it would be better for him to confess and convinced him that there was no other way out of that sick, tiny room. They told him that this was the only way Emily would ever see Caroline again. They filled his mind with lies for nearly 20 hours until he despaired, and he agreed to tell the police whatever they wanted to hear. For more information on Why Chris Confessed, click here.
Immediately afterward, Chris tried to recant his confession, but it was too late. The police threw him in jail with the charges of rape and murder. After his family and friends came up with $50,000 to bail him out of jail, he was arrested again 3 weeks later on a reworded charge for the same incident. His bond is now an additional one million dollars. The police have still not produced any evidence against Chris, and yet he sits a jail cell as the D.A. seeks after the death penalty. It has been nearly one full year since this tragedy occurred. The $50,000 bail money is gone and Chris still sits in a jail cell, waiting for his opportunity to tell of his innocence. His family makes the 1000 mile round trip at least once a week where they are allowed to see him on a video screen for 30 minutes. They do it because they know Chris. They know that he could not have hurt his baby. They believe in his innocence. Along with so many others, they are praying for his innocence to be proven and praying that he will be reunited with his family soon.
We are sharing Chris’ story in order to evoke a particular emotional response from the audience. The emotional response that we are hoping to evoke is fear. If the police are able to do what they did to a praiseworthy and honorable man like Chris, then no one is safe. When tragedy strikes, the police should not be our adversaries. In a time when comfort was needed, the police came only to add terror to terror. After the shock of fear gives way to anger, we would like to call on our fellow citizens to stand and demand that police interrogation techniques be changed, and to demand that the “blue wall of silence” come down. For the good of us all.
Chris and his friends and family are not anti-police. We believe in the God-ordained role of the government and of the police in the maintenance of a prosperous human society. We have the utmost respect for the position and title of police officer. However, our criminal justice system allows for the grievous abuse of power by police officers as is recounted by story after story across this land. We are calling, not for an overthrow of government or of our police forces, but for a change of policy and tactics that will protect our citizens from police officers who have no respect for law and order.
Continue reading on this site to view the autopsy report to see for yourself the PROOF that Adeline was not raped.
Also see the video that shows just a few of the times Chris denied the accusations. This video also presents a case for perjury against Sgt. Timothy Finley.
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