Alleged Killer: I Wanted Victim to Live, Despite Affair With Wife

Christian R. Martin said Calvin Phillips would've defended him in court
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted May 14, 2019 10:35 AM CDT
Alleged Killer: I Wanted Victim to Live, Despite Affair With Wife
Christian R. Martin.   (Christian County Detention Center, via AP)

One of the three people Christian R. Martin is accused of killing in 2015 had been set to testify in a court-martial stemming from allegations of physical and sexual abuse and the mishandling of classified information, levied by Martin's ex-wife, Joan Harmon. Martin, an Army major turned pilot, would later claim Calvin Phillips was having an affair with Harmon. "Everyone in town knew what was going on while I was at work every day," he told WSMV in 2016. But he added that was no reason to kill Phillips—something he could've easily done by running him over when Phillips once passed out in the road. "This woman had basically been milking me for eight years ... so I owed him for that," Martin said, per NBC News. Plus, "my private investigator went through all the allegations with him ... and just refuted everything," he said. "He was my star defense witness."

Phillips' son disagrees, per CNN. He says Martin "was shamefully kicked out of the military" and "my father had a lot to do with that." Calvin Phillips had been planning to testify in military court when he was found fatally shot in the cellar of his home. The bodies of Phillips' 58-year-old wife, Pamela, and 63-year-old neighbor Edward Dansereau were then discovered in a cornfield inside Pamela's burned-out car. Martin, named as a person of interest, was months later convicted by court-martial of assault on a child under the age of 16 and two counts of mishandling classified information, per the Washington Post. He was then sentenced to 90 days of confinement and dismissed. The 51-year-old, now living in North Carolina, was arrested early Saturday before a flight out of the Louisville airport. He's being held without bond at Christian County Detention Center in Hopkinsville, Ky. (More murder stories.)

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