Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

October 31, 2013

Murder case put on hold for now

Barry Porterfield
Pauls Valley Democrat

bporterfield@pvdemocrat.com — Any testimony will have to wait for now in the murder case against an Elmore City area man accused of causing the injuries that killed his girlfriend earlier this year.

A preliminary hearing for Brandon Shane Christian, 30, was postponed earlier this week in a Garvin County District courtroom.

Christian is facing a second-degree murder charge in connection to the death this summer of Desiree Hill.

The hearing scheduled for Monday, Oct. 28 was pushed back at the request of state prosecutors after it was announced the official cause of Hill’s death is still listed as “unknown.”

The ruling is part of a report compiled by the state examiner’s office after an autopsy on Hill was completed.

Prosecutors were granted the postponement after it was argued more time was needed to arrange for the medical examiner who performed the autopsy to testify at the future hearing.

All of this came over defense objections based on the grounds the state didn’t have sufficient evidence to convict Christian.

The new hearing date was set for early February, while Christian’s bond was lowered from $500,000 to $25,000.

Christian was originally facing an assault charge before that went to murder after Hill died on July 27.

Three days earlier it was Christian and a family member who drove Hill to Pauls Valley General Hospital’s emergency room. They had come from a rural residence near the community of Katie where Christian and Hill had resided together for more than a year.

Hill was described as non-responsive with visible trauma to her body, along with internal injuries.

She was also reported to have a “significant” injury to her brain, which officials said at the time might have led to her death.

Court records show Christian is accused of assaulting Hill between June 1 and June 24 and causing the injuries that ultimately resulted in her death.

Officials from the Garvin County Sheriff’s Department confirmed there had been a history of significant abuse and violence by Christian against Hill dating back to early 2012.

Christian has claimed Hill’s injuries were caused when she had overdosed on pills and fell face down into a residential floor.