It would be an understatement of epic proportions to say only that things have gotten more interesting since I published the first of more than three-dozen articles related to the efforts of Army’s efforts to prosecute Maj. Christian “Kit” Martin, 47, on sexual assault allegations. Why? Because so much more, including several mysterious deaths, has happened since then.
According to a local news report published early Thursday afternoon and updated some 27 hours later, human remains were found in two separate locations in Christian County, Ky., early Thursday morning and people began speculating as to whether or not a connection exists between the prosecution of Major Martin and the individuals found dead.
In another local news report today, a spokesman for the Christian County Sheriff’s Office confirmed that the remains found inside a burned-out vehicle off Rosetown Road on the outskirts of the town of Pembroke, Ky., were those of
Calvin and Pam Phillips. Correction: I misread the news report cited earlier in this paragraph (i.e., Miller says investigators have still not positively identified the body of the male victim found inside the home of Calvin and Pam Phillips at 443 South Main Street in Pembroke. A new news report confirms Calvin Phillips’ body was found inside his home on Main Street.)
According to the first news report, local law enforcement officials traced the burned-out car to the Phillips’ home at 443 South Main Street in Pembroke, a town located about 30 minutes north-northeast of Fort Campbell, Ky., home to the vaunted 101st Airborne Division. Soon after, they visited that home and found the body of another person – identified only as a man to date – who appeared to have suffered a gunshot wound to his chest. See correction above.
Perhaps of interest to anyone following the case is the fact Major Martin lives only a few doors down and across the street from the Phillips home. In addition, Calvin Phillips is the man who stood with the major’s accuser and ex-“spouse,” in telling the FBI the major was a thief and an international spy. FYI: I placed the word, spouse, in quotes, because she pleaded guilty in Christian County Court Oct. 14 to one felony count of bigamy (i.e., she admitted in court to having married Major Martin without telling him she was still married to another man). The “evidence” the pair turned in to the FBI — as allegedly having belonged to Major Martin — consisted of an inoperable laptop computer that turned out to have been out of the Army’s inventory for seven years and several compact discs upon which had been scrawled words intended to indicate the CDs contained classified information.
Not surprisingly, the extremely-serious allegations prompted FBI officials to pass along the information to investigators at Army Criminal Investigation Command. Those officials, in turn, conducted an extensive six-month investigation which, unbeknownst to Major Martin as it was taking place, included surveillance and wiretapping as well as an extensive search of his off-post home. In the end, the allegations were proven to be false.
After news broke about the bodies being found in Christian County, I was contacted by an individual at Fort Campbell who, having read my series of articles about Major Martin, informed me the major had been arrested Friday by “CID agents with guns drawn.”
In my effort to confirm whether or not Major Martin had, indeed, been arrested, I fired off the inquiry below to Army LTC Chevelle Thomas, a public affairs officer at Fort Campbell, early Monday afternoon:
I’d like answers ASAP to the following questions regarding Maj. Christian R. “Kit” Martin, a Soldier assigned to the 101st Airborne Division at Fort Campbell:
1. Is Major Martin under some sort of confinement or “house arrest” at Fort Campbell? If so, please provide details about his current status, the reason(s) for it and the anticipated duration of such confinement.
2. Did investigators with the Army’s Criminal Investigation Division staff at Fort Campbell participate in a search of Major Martin’s off-post home at any time during or since Thursday, Nov. 19, 2015? If so, please describe the reason for CID conducting a search of the major’s residence and their legal justification for the same?
3. Do CID investigators at Fort Campbell consider Major Martin a suspect in any recent off-post deaths, including one at a home in his neighborhood, reported over the weekend? If so, why?
4. Do Army officials plan to move forward with plans to conduct a military trial Dec. 1 with Major Martin as a defendant even though his accuser recently pleaded guilty to one felony count of bigamy in Christian County Court?
I was also contacted by another individual who, after requesting anonymity, told me CID agents joined local law enforcement investigators barely 90 minutes after they had begun searching the Phillips home and remained on scene there, and at the nearby house belonging to the major, as it was searched.
These observations appeared to be confirmed in the second news report which cited a Christian County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson as saying the investigations into the deaths remain in the hands of the Christian County Sheriff and Kentucky State Police, with some assistance from Fort Campbell.
While I wait for a response from Colonel Thomas at Fort Campbell, I point readers to more than three-dozen articles I’ve written during the past four months. They are about Major Martin’s case exclusively or about military justice cases in general. Eleven feature excerpts from a video interview I conducted with Major Martin, a highly-decorated attack helicopter pilot and combat veteran. Others tackle the issues of prosecutorial misconduct, unlawful command influence and the appearance that many Army officers seem bent on convicting a 29-year veteran despite knowing the allegations were made by a woman who’s life history reveals a pattern of deceit and betrayal.
In my next article, I’ll share many previously-unpublished details about the case that were shared with me by a confidential source close to the investigation. Stay tuned!
UPDATE: See also Is Army Trying to Destroy Officer’s Chance for Fair Trial?
UPDATE #2 11/24/2015 at 9:34 a.m. Central: At 9:10 a.m. today, I received the less-than-forthcoming reply (see below) from Colonel Thomas to my four questions submitted yesterday:
Commanders of Fort Campbell have the authority to put administrative limitations within their command. MAJ Christian Martin is currently pending a General Court Martial for 1-5 Dec 2015 time period. There have been no changes to the docket at this time.
Please refer to the Kentucky State Police Department or the Christian County Police Department for the other questions.
UPDATE #3 11/24/2015 at 4:12 p.m. Central: Approximately 40 minutes ago, I received an update from Colonel Thomas at Fort Campbell. She wrote, “MAJ Christian Martin’s General Court Martial has been officially delayed by the military judge as of today. It has not been re-docketed so there is no new date to report at this time.” Does this mean the “wheels of justice” might finally be rolling in Major Martin’s direction? Only time will tell.
UPDATE #4 11/25/2015 at 8:59 a.m. Central: I posted a correction in the third paragraph above. It appears in red.
UPDATE 12/7/2015 at 8:17 a.m. Central: A military judge continued the military trial date for Army Maj. Christian “Kit” Martin to sometime in March 2016, though no specific date has been set.
UPDATE 12/10/2015 at 11:11 a.m. Central: I’ve learned that Major Martin’s military trial date is set for March 14-18, 2016.
Stay tuned for more!
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