A US Commercial airline pilot was arrested Saturday for his alleged involvement in a 2015 unsolved triple homicide.
Fifty one year old Raleigh resident, Christian Richard “kip” martin, was apprehended at Muhammad Ali International Airport, Louisville just minutes before takeoff. Local Marshalls and police escorted him off the scheduled domestic flight from Louisville to Charlotte and booked him down at the Christian County Detention Center in Hopkinsville, KY where he is currently being detained without bond.
Martin had been employed as a Bombardier CRJ first officer at PSA for around a year and a half and started working for the airline at the start of 2018. A criminal background check performed by the American airline failed to turn up any information that would deem him unfit for the position. Martin was also a former army man with experience as helicopter pilot. In a statement released after his arrest, the company announced that they had placed Martin on administrative suspension.
Christian Martin is a former Army Ranger major with almost 30 years of military service under his belt. He was eventually court marshaled around August 2016 after accusations against him relating to sexual abuse and the physical assault of a child, however ended up being acquitted and charged for a lesser crime, mishandling classified information. He was dishonorably discharged from the military following a trial and placed under a 3 month confinement.
Martin reportedly put his step-son, a minor, in an RNC choke hold and lifted him off the ground until he passed out. An article published in 2016 states “Martin is accused of child sex abuse, aggravated assault and mishandling classified information.” He was found not guilty on the charges of child sex abuse.
His episodes of violence did not end there, however, as he is currently the prime suspect in the 2015 unsolved triple murder of three of his neighbors, for which he has been indicted for three counts of murder, one count of arson, one additional attempt of arson, two counts of burglary and three counts of tampering with evidence.
On the 18th November 2015, 59 year old Calvin Phillips was found dead in the basement of his home in Penbrook, Kentucky. There was evidence of forced entry to the residence and it was determined that he had been shot with a .45 caliber pistol. Not only did Mr. Phillips and Mr. Martin live on the same street, but they also had a lot of history. Christian Martin and his ex-wife, Joan Harmon, divorced a couple of years before the murders. After the divorce was finalized Harmon and Phillips began building a case against Martin to expose the violence he had inflicted upon his stepson and his possession of classified military information. They had obtained photographs that allegedly depicted the child victim, believed to be his step son, sporting injuries sustained from being repeatedly choked and bitten. Discs that contained classified information were also allegedly found to be in Martins possession.
Calvin Phillips was set to testify against Martin as a main witness in the case that was scheduled to take place just two weeks before his murder. Although Martin accused Phillips of having an affair with his wife in 2016, he claimed that he didn’t really care. He said he looked at the situation as if Phillips was taking a “problem off his hands”. He told investigators and the media that he had no motive to kill his neighbor as he needed him for the upcoming trial.
Phillips’ son believes that Christian Martin murdered his father because he was the main witness in the case against him. It’s difficult to ignore this suspicion as a motive seeing as Phillips, and those close to him, were murdered on the same night, by the same modus operandi, just two weeks before he was scheduled to testify against him.
Later that same day, on November 15th, the bodies of Calvin Phillips’ neighbor, Mr. Edward Dansereau, 63 and his own wife, Mrs. Pamela Phillips, 58, were quickly discovered several miles away in a burned out car in the middle of a corn field. The vehicle belonged to Pamela but the remains were so charred that their bodies had been rendered unidentifiable. Both were later confirmed to be Mrs. Phillips and Mr. Dansereau and it was revealed after autopsy that they had been both shot with a .22 caliber pistol before being driven out to the rural area and torched.
In a 2016 T.V interview with WSMV TV Nashville Christian Martin looked baffled at the accusations against him in connection with the triple murders. Dressed in a grey T shirt and red button down he shakes his head and says “I met them when I first moved here in the fall of 2011. I don’t know why anyone would want to do something to them.”
Martin maintains his innocence and argues that his ex-wife, who he claims vowed to “ruin his career”, is behind it.
An excerpt from nbcnews.com reads: "I will ruin your career, I will ruin your life, I know how to do it," he said. She then accused him of rape, sodomy, child abuse, child molestation, and stealing a military computer, all of which the Army was investigating, Martin said. Harmon also "went to the FBI and told them I was an international spy, which is, I know, crazy," Martin said, adding that Phillips had accompanied her to make that accusation.
It is unclear at this point in the investigation what new evidence has been revealed, but the trial is set to start later this month.
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