SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Day Four of the Shawn Christy trial brought with it some tense moments as prosecutors continue to build their case, seeking a conviction for the Schuylkill County man. Christy was the focus of a three-month manhunt that spanned six states and Canada.
Federal prosecutors called witness after witness who testified about key pieces of evidence they say proves that Christy was, as the Deputy U.S. Attorney said in his opening statement, “a one-man crime wave.”
Federal prosecutors called an FBI fingerprint expert who testified that Shawn Christy’s fingerprint was found inside a school van that was stolen from a bus company near Hazleton and found abandoned near Nitro, West Virginia. She told the jury that there is no question that it came from Christy.
The expert said, “We not only entered it into our national database, but we checked it with visually with records available to us.”
Christy asked her: “Did you hear my name before your analysis was completed?”
The expert answered: “Yes, because time was key. It’s known as 24/7. The Marshals wanted to know for sure who they were looking for in that area.”
Prosecutors say they suspected that Christy may have been in that area. Another witness, the owner of a trucking company in Maryland, testified that he saw a suspicious person on his property. That man ran away into a wooded area. He later learned it was Christy.
He found a backpack inside one of his trucks. The backpack contained a handgun, tools, and maps and a book on how to survive outdoors. Also found in that backpack, banking documents that were stolen from a truck in Kentucky. Those documents belonged to Dakota Meyer, who was once married to Bristol Palin, the daughter of one-time vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin.
In 2011, Christy pleaded guilty to federal harassment charges in connection with phone calls to an attorney in Alaska who represents the Palin family. Federal prosecutors could wrap up their case Friday. Christy will then present his case. He said he may or may not call witnesses.
If convicted, Christy faces anywhere from 20 to 60 years in prison.