Three years later, MAX stabbing killer Jeremy Christian sentenced to life in prison without parole
PORTLAND, Ore. (KPTV) - The man convicted of killing two men and injuring another on a MAX train in 2017 has been sentenced to to life in prison without parole.
Jeremy Christian, 38, learned his fate on Wednesday following two days of emotional impact statements by victims and witnesses.
Judge Cheryl Albrecht sentenced Christian to true life in prison without the possibility of parole for both counts of the first-degree murder. He was also sentenced to 310 additional months, about 26 years, in prison for his other convictions.
Here is a breakdown of Christian’s sentence provided by the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office:
- Count 1 – Life imprisonment without the possibility of release or parole for the intentional killing of Taliesin Namkai-Meche.
- Count 2 – Life imprisonment without the possibility of release or parole to be served consecutive to count 1 for the intentional killing of Ricky Best.
- Count 3 – 240 months in prison (130 months to be served consecutive to counts 1 & 2, 110 months to be severed concurrently) for the attempted murder of Micah Fletcher.
- Count 4 – 90 months in prison to be served concurrently for the assault of Fletcher.
- Count 5 – 364 days in jail to be served concurrently for the intimidation (hate crime) of Walio Mohamed.
- Count 6 – 364 days in jail to be served concurrently for the intimidation (hate crime) of Destinee Mangum.
- Count 7 – 60 months in prison to be served consecutive to counts 1, 2, 3 for the unlawful use of a weapon against Shawn Forde.
- Count 8 – 364 days in jail to be served concurrently for the menacing of Forde.
- Count 9 – 364 days in jail to be served concurrently for the intimidation (hate crime) of Hester.
- Count 10 – 120 months in prison to be served consecutive to counts 1, 2, 3,and 7 for the assault of Hester.
- Count 11 – 60 months in prison to be served concurrently for the unlawful use of a weapon against Hester.
- Count 12 - 364 days in jail to be served concurrently for the menacing of Hester.
Christian was convicted on Feb. 21 on all 12 counts against him.
In May 2017, Christian fatally stabbed Best, 53, of Happy Valley, and Taliesin Namkai-Meche, 23, of Portland. Fletcher was also stabbed, and survived the attack.
Christian’s was scheduled to be sentenced in March, but it was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
On Tuesday, victim impact statements began at around 11 a.m. with Demertia Hester first to take the stand. Hester says Christian verbally assaulted and threw a Gatorade bottle at her on a MAX train the day before the stabbings.
During her statement, Hester addressed Christian personally and ended her statement by saying “when you die and go to hell, I hope you rot.”
Christian reacted by shouting at Hester, yelling violent threats and aggressively removing his face covering.
As he was taken out of the courtroom, Christian yelled “I should’ve killed you, b****.”
Judge Albrecht ordered Christian out of the courtroom after his outburst and he was restricted from sitting in on further testimony from victims and their family members. However, victims’ advocates for the Namkai-Meche family and Fletcher asked the judge to allow Christian back into the courtroom so he could hear their remarks.
Ultimately, the judge decided to move him into another space where he wouldn’t be able to disrupt the proceedings, but could still hear remarks. Victims could also see him, but were unable to hear anything he said.
Victim impact statements continued on Wednesday, including a statement from Fletcher.
Fletcher says he resorted to frequent drinking after the deadly May 2017 stabbing. He stated that he was likely at least slightly intoxicated in early interviews after the attack.
Fletcher also says he scan every room he enters for safety risks.
“There is not a room in this world that I can enter without at least standing at first to decide who the person is most likely to hurt me, how close by they are,” said Fletcher.
Following Fletcher’s statement, Christian delivered a statement on Wednesday saying he “will not accept any guilt.”
“I do regret that two people died, but I do not regret my actions that led to their deaths, nor was it my explicit intent to murder anyone,” Christian said.
Christian finished his statement by saying “to Micah Fletcher, I hold no ill will. You chose violence, I chose violence, two people died, you survived.” He went on to say that Fletcher could write him while he is in prison.
Multnomah County District Attorney Rod Underhill said upon sentencing:
“From the beginning of this case, we have seen and heard the racism and hatred cast by Jeremy Christian. His appalling actions and beliefs will never have a place in our community. Today, we focus on and remember the heroic efforts of the individuals who courageously came forward and immediately – in the face of great danger to themselves – started performing first aid and gave solace to Taliesin Namkai-Meche, Ricky Best and Micah Fletcher. We honor the first responders – the police officers, firefighters and paramedics – who found themselves in a chaotic and traumatizing-blood-soaked scene. Although we still deeply hurt, we are stronger in our resolve to stand up to and reject hate. We do so inspired by the courage, compassion and strength of Taliesin Namkai-Meche, Ricky Best, Micah Fletcher, Walio Mohamed, Destinee Mangum, Demetria Hester, Shawn Forde and so many others, including the families of Taliesin and Ricky. Every witness who testified selflessly gave their time and energy to see this through. The resulting convictions do little to ease the pain. But, they do show those who foster hate what our community can and will do to combat such evil as we move forward – together.”
The district attorney’s office said the court will determine the total restitution amount at a later date.
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