The Oak Ridge man who was charged with attempted first-degree murder on March 1 allegedly threatened to kill his pregnant teenage girlfriend and her fetus, and repeatedly punched her in the stomach, head, and back, authorities said.
The pregnant 15-year-old female said she went to the Wakefield Road home of Khristoff Deshawn Lee, a 21-year-old with whom she had a relationship, on October 17, 2014, according to arrest warrants filed in Anderson County General Sessions Court in Oak Ridge.
After she arrived, the girl said, the two met in the bathroom, where Lee allegedly closed the door and told her, “(Expletive), you know what time it is,” according to the warrants, which were filed by Oak Ridge Police Department Detective John Criswell.
The girl, who was about two months pregnant at the time, said Lee then punched her in the stomach, head, and back multiple times, according to the warrants.
“She (the juvenile victim) stated that she was in a lot of pain and told him that he was killing her,” the warrants said. “She stated that Khristoff told her: ‘I am gonna kill you and this (expletive) in your stomach.’”
The girl said Lee let her go, but he kept her shoes, jacket, and cell phone, according to the warrants. The girl ran out to her car, where her sister was waiting, and she was taken to Park West Hospital.
The girl said she received medical care at the hospital but, in order to protect Lee, told the staff that she fell down the stairs, the warrants said.
The fetus was examined for any possible injury, one warrant said. There was no reported injury.
Five charges that Lee was facing from that year, which also included an alleged robbery from a September incident, were dismissed in Anderson County General Sessions Court in Oak Ridge on June 19, 2015, when a witness for the state didn’t appear. The original charges were robbery (home invasion), aggravated assault (domestic), assault (domestic), attempted assault (domestic), and statutory rape.
But this month, in a separate proceeding, Khristoff Lee, who is now 22, was indicted by the Anderson County Grand Jury on charges of attempted first-degree murder, robbery, statutory rape, aggravated assault (strangulation), and assault. (His brother, Joseph Garner Lee, 26, was also indicted for robbery on March 1, and the two were arrested on East Tennessee Avenue on Sunday. They both have addresses listed on Wakefield Road.)
Anderson County District Attorney General Dave Clark reviewed the Khristoff Lee case, and he considered the alleged assault an attempted murder. Clark cited Lee’s own chilling language, as recounted by the juvenile victim: “I am gonna kill you and this (expletive) in your stomach.’”
“His words and his actions indicated that he intended to commit a homicide,” Clark said Monday.
The grand jury indictment for attempted first-degree murder alleges that Lee tried to kill Baby Doe, the unborn fetus, in October 2014. But the baby was born alive, authorities said.
Clark said Tennessee has a statute that gives a prosecutor discretion to bring charges related to a fetus of any age in homicide cases (under TCA 39-13-214). There is a separate statute for assault-related offenses, Clark said.
In another alleged assault case that led to an indictment, Lee and his juvenile girlfriend were reported to be having a disagreement on July 27, 2014, according to the indictment and an arrest warrant. When the girl went to Lee’s home on Wakefield Road, he allegedly grabbed her and pulled her into the house after meeting her at the front door, and put her into a “head lock,” where he held for several minutes, the warrant said.
The girl told Criswell that she could hear Lee’s mother and sister yelling at him to not hurt her, the warrant said.
“The victim stated that she was having trouble breathing from being choked by Khristoff and she tried to tell him to stop but could barely speak,” the warrant said. “She stated that (the sister) called 911 and reported a disturbance, at which time Khristoff let go.”
But when the police arrived, the victim asked the mother not to tell them what had happened, so she told the police that it was a disturbance between Lee and his sister over a cell phone, according to the warrant.
“The victim thought Khristoff would change, and he apologized to her, so she never reported the assault,” the warrant said.
But Criswell said the incident was confirmed by a computer-generated dispatch record. Lee’s sister denied the incident when asked about it, Criswell said, but the victim has a recorded phone call where the sister admits that Lee choked her.
The home invasion robbery is alleged to have occurred on Princeton Avenue sometime in the last two weeks of September 2014. In that case, an Oak Ridge man reported that several men entered his home and robbed him at gunpoint, according to another arrest warrant.
The victim, Michael Glenn, identified Khristoff Lee as one of two suspects who robbed him at gunpoint of two cell phones, $100 in cash, and a video game controller, according to the warrant.
The second suspect wrestled with him for the property in his pockets during the robbery, the victim said. During that time, the victim said, the suspect yelled, “‘Stoff,’ get the gun!’”
“Glenn stated that he turned his head and realized that Lee was standing behind him pointing a handgun at him,” Criswell said in the warrant.
Glenn stopped resisting and told them to take what they came for and get out. The suspects reportedly broke his flat-screen television while trying to take it, the warrants said.
Glenn also said there were two females involved, including a juvenile. During interviews, the two females and a Princeton Avenue resident positively identified Lee and another suspect as two of the suspects that committed the robbery, Criswell said in the warrant.
Lee remained jailed in the Anderson County Detention Facility in Clinton on Monday night. His bond has been set at $210,000, according to jail records.
Criswell said he learned that two other people, Laphonso Porter and Joseph Lee, were present during the September 2014 robbery. Porter, who also has a Wakefield Road address, was indicted on the robbery charge on March 1 along with the Lee brothers.
Joseph Lee remained jailed Monday, and his bond on the robbery charge has been set at $50,000, according to jail records.
Porter was arrested March 3 on the robbery charge, and he was released that day on a $55,000 bond for that charge and another charge of contributing to a minor, according to jail records. That March 3 arrest followed a stop by Oliver Springs Police Department Patrolman Bruce Morgan and a K-9 search of a stopped Nissan Maxima by Oak Ridge Police Department Officer John Thomas and a pat-down search of two juvenile females inside the car, one 17 and one 16, by ORPD Officer Sherrill Selby. Officers found cognac whiskey in the back with the girls, a pack of cigars in one of their purses, and a plastic baggie with a green leafy material (suspected marijuana) on one of them, an arrest warrant said.
The Lee brothers were arrested without incident on Sunday by ORPD SWAT and Patrol officers.
Another suspect, the one who allegedly wrestled with Glenn and yelled ‘Stoff,’ get the gun!” in the September 2014 robbery on Princeton Avenue was identified as Debriael Dupree Hall, according to a warrant. Hall, who has a Utica Circle address, was indicted November 3, 2015, on charges of aggravated robbery and aggravated burglary. He remained jailed Monday night.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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