Christopher Deedy: Convicted in the Media

Tags: ,

Categories: Articles

This is a reprint of an article that appeared on PoliceMag.com. You can read the original post here.

Convicted in the Media

A federal agent is on trial for murder in Hawaii, and it may not be a fair trial.

August 22, 2012 by Jon Adler

On Nov. 5, Diplomatic Security Services Special Agent Chris Deedy, 28, was charged with second-degree murder in Hawaii. Initial news accounts of the incident quoted the civil attorney representing the family of the deceased and claimed that a drunken rogue agent followed the unarmed “victim,” Kollin Elderts, 23, out of a Waikiki nightclub after exchanging words and summarily shot him in front of a McDonald’s. Headlines were quick to characterize Deedy as a killer and a murderer.

To further stack the jury pool deck against Deedy, the prosecutor’s spokesman said surveillance video coverage of the incident was conclusive by stating, “This is a killing caught on camera.”

Deedy was part of a detail that was in Hawaii on assignment for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit. On the night of the incident he was on personal time, hanging out with a college friend and the friend’s girlfriend.

According to his attorney, Deedy consumed a small amount of alcohol earlier in the evening, but was not intoxicated when the incident occurred. The defense also says that contrary to initial headlines and attorney statements, Deedy did not exchange words with Elderts in the night club and Deedy did not follow Elderts out of the club and then shoot him in front of McDonald’s.

Witness statements and surveillance footage from the security cameras in the McDonald’s reportedly reveal that Deedy was actually seated inside the restaurant with his friends when Elderts came through the door with another man. Witness accounts say Elderts and his counterpart were verbally abusive and belligerent toward customers. Video and witness accounts also indicate that Elderts and the other man were allegedly poised to physically strike a male customer right before Deedy confronted them.

The defense says Deedy approached Elderts and displayed his badge and credentials. Witness accounts add that Deedy asked Elderts to calm down and cease what was characterized as aggressive behavior. The defense says that video and witness accounts will show that Elderts responded to Deedy’s request by attacking the agent and knocking him to the ground. Elderts, who had a 30-pound weight advantage over Deedy, allegedly also struck Deedy in the face several times.

Contrary to the initial news account, Deedy did not fire his weapon once into Elderts’ chest. Instead, he fired three rounds from his weapon.

So how did Deedy miss twice? The video reportedly shows that Deedy drew his weapon, but did not immediately discharge it. Elderts then allegedly lunged at Deedy and grabbed the barrel of the agent’s weapon. Two shots were fired during the struggle, but neither party was struck.

Deedy was knocked to the ground, the video shows. Then Elderts allegedly lunged at the dazed agent, who then fired his weapon and struck Elderts in the chest. The medical examiner’s report showed that Elderts had a high level of alcohol in his system, as well as drugs.

Deedy rendered first aid to the mortally wounded Elderts. That is not disputed by either side. Elderts’ counterpart, who was allegedly beating on Deedy’s friend, fled the scene before the police arrived. Deedy continued to render CPR after the police arrived, then he was subsequently taken to the hospital to treat his injuries.

At the hospital Deedy was arrested and now awaits trial. Given the harmful impact the initial headlines and attorney statements could have on a prospective jury pool, Deedy’s attorney has asked that the prosecutor release the McDonald’s video so it could be used for Deedy’s defense. The prosecutor’s office argues that release of the video will taint the jury pool, and it should only be shown in court once the trial begins.

The net effect is that Deedy’s attorney now has to overcome accusatory news media reports and somehow hope he can get an impartial jury. He will have to overcome the prejudicial misperception that a rogue law enforcement officer shot an innocent unarmed man. Incidentally, Elderts had two prior arrests: disorderly conduct and driving under the influence.

Setting aside the hype, the jury will have to determine if Deedy was justified in discharging his firearm. Use-of-force expert witnesses will likely be called to testify and provide context for the actions taken by the accused. The prosecution will likely attempt to minimize the level of threat posed by Elderts by repeatedly describing him as “unarmed.” Hopefully, the facts of the case will show that the level of force was justifiable and that Elderts did pose a lethal threat to Deedy.

Author: admin

12 Responses to "Christopher Deedy: Convicted in the Media"

  1. adsfasdf Posted on July 11, 2013 at 1:34 am

    murderer

  2. Chuck Posted on July 12, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    Apparently you haven’t seen the video jackass. Get a clue and an eyeglass prescription. Deedy is innocent.

    • Mark Posted on July 14, 2013 at 10:03 pm

      +100 Victor. Deedyway overstepped his authority and his reason for being in Hawaii in the first place. I love how this thread says he consumed a small amount of alcohol. What a crock of bullshit. What’s the policy SA Deedy? Does it say its ok to consume a small amount and carry? Guilty. Your stupid decision to carry and drink should and will cost you everything. Just like it cost Elderts everything.

    • Mark Posted on July 14, 2013 at 10:13 pm

      I saw the video, jackass. What video did you watch? Oh, you must have watched the one where the 4th Amendment is suspended and a citizen not doing anything but eating a a table can be stopped, interrogated and then killed. The one I saw showed Deedy, presuming to be a local HPD officer and responding to a non-existing complaint of harassment at the Micky D. Who asked him to respond? No one? Why did he go up to Elderts and identify himself as a LEO? Is that what he was in Hawaii for? Did HPD need help policing the McD’s at 2am? Who in the fvck made him a police officer that night? OMG! Was a felony in progress? Was someone being violently assaulted in his presence? Nope, just another bully with a badge with no understanding of what his job actually is. All pumped up with FLETC sass and no one to push around. Watch the video again “Chuck” cause you missed the entire point.

  3. concerned Posted on July 13, 2013 at 3:56 am

    Deedy is NOT innocent. He made decisions that led to his free-willed actions.Deedy needs to take the responsibility for his decisive actions. Consequences for the death of another person. He should also have made the decision to take a blood alcohol test so that there would be confirmation of the level of alcohol in his system and leave no doubt about this. This test may or may not have worked in his favor, but too late now. He made many unwise decisions that day that led to this tragedy. Deedy solved nothing thru his unwise decisions and actions.

  4. Joe Posted on July 15, 2013 at 9:59 pm

    If Deedy did not confront Elderts at his table, none of this would have happened. Deedy took it upon himself to confront Elderts, no one else felt threatened, or asked for his help. Because he chose to confront Elderts, Elderts is dead.

    • MJ Posted on April 6, 2014 at 12:25 pm

      Because Elderts harassed his fellow customers, refused to follow the request of a LEO to moderate his behavior, and then attacked said LEO, Elderts is dead.

  5. Xing Wong Posted on July 17, 2013 at 2:46 pm

    So a law enforcement officer chose to “confront” a punk that was acting up and had all nature of drugs in his system – if the punk didn’t hit the cop and drive him into a corner none of this would have happened either – look at the punks history of violence – why doesn’t anyone try to get CNN interested in this case? I am so tired of hearing about George Zimmerman.

  6. Tom Martin Posted on July 18, 2013 at 11:54 am

    It’s nice that Deedy has loyal friends, but being a friend does not compel shameless public advocacy which runs contra to the naked truth. Deedy made a foolish decision. In life, especially at Deedy’s young age and in the unique and heady circumstances he found himself in, it’s the nature of man to embark on regrettable and forgettable avenues at times. We all have. But Deedy’s over sized sense of importance injected himself into a situation he had NO RIGHT to be involved in. It had the only outcome possible when one is carrying a gun.

    Deedy would be better served to “man up” to his actions, to admit he made a huge error and that he is sincerely contrite. That’s maturity. Local people are very fair, and forgiving, but the arrogance and sense of misplaced entitlement Deedy has shown is, hopefully, going to earn him the maximum sentence the judge can impose.

    • Mark Posted on July 18, 2013 at 2:36 pm

      You summed it up perfectly Tom.

  7. KC Posted on July 18, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    Do you understand the federal government believes Deedy had the right to shoot Kolin in self defense! That is why Chris Deedy still has his job today. It is a good thing that Kolin didn’t get that gun out of Chris’s hand that night. He could have shot every one in the McDonalds. Kolin was not in a good state of mind that evening and there is evidence that shows this. People on cocaine and alcohol act aggressive. The last person you should be acting aggressive towards is a federal agent or a police officer. This is why our fellow bradah is dead. Take this as a learning lesson, don’t fight everything in life!

    • Mark Posted on July 18, 2013 at 6:06 pm

      Incorrect KC, if anything the Federal Government has stayed very much out of it. Deedy has been on Administrative leave since the shooting.which means he receives less pay than on active duty. His Department is not providing any legal assistance and according to more than one source, they even refused to confirm he worked for the State Department. That’s pretty far from any assistance for an employee who acted correctly.

      But you are right, pushing back on Deedy was stupid. All reports were he was harassing customers but he’d stopped to eat. When a LEO says cease and desist, you should stop; not attack him. Both were wrong that night. Deedy was stupid for initiating the confrontation and Elderts was stupid for not listening and then escalating the situation. Trying to take his gun? Stupid. At that point the situation turned into a deadly force incident.

      Your lesson is also valid. Don’t try to fight everything in life. One day, you’re bound to lose.

Leave a Reply