PORTLAND, Ore. — A jury on Friday convicted Jeremy Christian on all 12 charges related to his 2017 deadly attack aboard a Portland MAX train.
The stabbings left two people, Ricky Best and Taliesin Namkai-Meche, dead. A third stabbing victim, Micah Fletcher, survived.
In addition to the stabbing victims, there were others who were the targets of angry racist rants. Christian was also convicted of assaulting and intimidating a black woman on a MAX train the day before the fatal attack.
Friday’s decision by the jury brought relief and a sense of justice to those directly impacted by Christian’s racist and criminal actions.
Hester said Christian threw a bottle at her and assaulted her on the MAX train the day before the stabbings. Christian was convicted of second-degree assault, second-degree intimidation, unlawful use of a weapon and menacing for his attack on Hester. She said the guilty verdict sent a message to anyone like Christian.
“This is just a small defeat, but it lets people like Jeremy Joseph Christian know that you’re not going to get away with it. That we do have people who care about all of us because black lives do matter. The people that were killed, they did that out of love and protection," she said.
Hester said that because the death penalty is off the table, she hopes Christian gets sentenced to life in prison without parole.
Father of Micah Fletcher
Micah Fletcher was in the courtroom when the verdict was read on Friday but declined to speak with the media afterward. His father said he’s very happy with the jury’s decision and feels “justice has been served.”
He said hearing his son testify was difficult.
“The hardest part of the whole trial is hearing your son on a platform crying for help and as a father you weren’t there," Micah's father said.
Micah’s father expects Christian will be in jail for the rest of his life.
He also said his son is “doing really well” and trying to move forward with his life.
Mother of Destinee Mangum
Destinee Mangum was one of the then-teenage girls, along with Walio Mohamed, who was a victim of Christian’s tirade the day of the deadly attack. Mangum wasn’t in the courtroom Friday, but her mother was when the jury handed down its decision. She said Destinee is “very happy” about the verdict.
“I’m hoping for justice to be served,” Mangum’s mother said about sentencing. “I’m feeling good about it. After today, I feel way better and I’m pretty sure they will make the right decision.
The sentencing phase is next. Because he’s guilty of murder, Christian will likely spend the rest of his life in prison.