White supremacist double-murderer Jeremy Christian was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday for slashing two men to death when they tried to protect two Black teenagers Christian was menacing on a Portland, Oregon, MAX train in 2017.
Christian, 38, pleaded not guilty in 2017 to 15 charges ranging from menacing to first-degree murder. He was convicted of 12 in February, the Oregonian reported.
Witnesses — including family of Taliesin Namkai-Meche and Ricky Best, who Christian murdered — asked the judge to make sure Christian never walked free in society again. Christian also exploded at a woman he victimized with a hate crime, telling her he wished he had killed her, CBS News reported.
Victim Demetria Hester Called Christian a ‘Waste of Breath’ Before He Verbally Attacked Her, Saying, ‘I Should Have Killed Her’
Demetria Hester encountered Christian on the train on May 25, 2017, the night before the deadly attack. He began ranting about how much he hated Muslims, Blacks and Jews, until she confronted him, local public radio OPB reported. He followed her when they both got off the train and threw a half-full Gatorade bottle at her face, causing lasting damage to her eye.
On Tuesday, she got her say and provoked a profane outburst from Christian that ended with him being ejected from the courtroom.
“Your mom should have swallowed you — you are a waste of breath, and when you die, I hope you rot,” Hester told Christian from the witness stand, according to courtroom footage.
Christian, who has a history of violent and racist social media posts, screamed, “We don’t want you here with all your race-baiting bulls**t,” and as he was being dragged from the courtroom shouted, “I should have killed her.”
Micah Fletcher, Who Survived Being Stabbed in the Neck, Told Christian He Was Nothing More Than a ‘Man Who Was Drunk With a Knife on a Train’
Micah Fletcher was the sole survivor of Christian’s knife attack on the train. When Christian was berating and menacing the two girls, one of whom was wearing a hijab, Fletcher tried to stop it and in return, Christian stabbed him in the neck, KATU reported.
Fletcher also gave a victim impact statement, telling Christian and the courtroom that he has suffered nightmares in which he is stuck in a tunnel that fills up with blood until he drowns. He also succumbed to alcoholism before getting free with the help of Alcoholics Anonymous, he said.
He told his attacker, “You are not some mythological all-powerful terrorist monster. You are a man that was drunk with a knife on a train. That is what you are.”
“There is not a room in this world I can enter without at first standing to decide who the person is who is most likely to hurt me,” Fletcher said. “How many steps would it take for them to get to me? What kind of weapons do they have?”
Hester Told Heavy That She Wanted Christian to Get the Death Penalty & That His Courtroom Outbursts Were Emblematic of White Privilege
Hester told Heavy in an interview Friday that Christian’s sentencing was not the first time the double-murderer had lashed out at her in the courtroom, and she was dismayed that it was allowed to happen multiple times.
“This is not the first time he has verbally attacked me in court,” she said Friday. “It’s just been so emblematic of white privilege that he was allowed to do whatever he wanted in court, no matter what the victims wanted.”
While Hester was testifying at an April 26 hearing, Christian called her a liar and said, “I’m the victim,” the Oregonian reported.
“You’re manufacturing hate crimes in 2017,” Christian shouts on video taken in the courtroom.
Christian also during a hearing turned around and winked at Hester, she alleged, but nothing was done about it, because Christian said he was winking at his mother.
“This is the kind of thing we, as victims, have to proceed to go through while processing what’s going on to us, while we’re trying to deal with being healthy and moving on,” she said.”It’s a lot to put on a person.”
Hester told Heavy she wanted Christian to get the death penalty, not only for justice, but also because she fears he will spread his hateful ideology among other inmates.
“His life for two lives? I’ll take that,” Hester said. “Rather than us the taxpayers, with a huge number of minorities, paying for him to serve two life sentences … he’ll be recruiting people to be white supremacists and we’re paying for him to do that? No.”
Christian Will Spend the Rest of His Life in Prison, With No Parole, But He Said He Does Not Regret His Actions
Multnomah County Circuit Judge Cheryl Albrecht handed Christian two life consecutive sentences for the murders of Namkai-Meche and Best, the Associated Press reported. He was also sentenced to 25 years for stabbing Fletcher and attacking Hester the night before.
Fletcher gave a statement by video — he had been ejected from the courtroom — in which he expressed remorse only at the fact that two of his victims had died.
“I did not commit an act of violence on that train,” Christian said through tears, according to the Oregonian.
Where I was brought up in North Portland, we defend ourselves,” Christian said. “…I did not commit an act of violence on that train.” He then added, “I do regret that two people died, but I do not regret my actions.”