, Corbin, KY

March 28, 2014

Solicitation to commit murder trial continued

The Times-Tribune

CORBIN — By John L. Ross / Staff Writer

The trial for a man facing one charge of solicitation to commit murder was continued Thursday — to September.

But it really wasn’t made clear as to why.

Tristan Hall, 30, of Corbin, made a very brief appearance before Judge Paul K. Winchester in Whitley County Circuit Court Thursday with his attorney, Warren Scoville.

In fact, his was the first case tackled by the court.

Hall was indicted for this solicitation charge in June 2013 after he allegedly advertised on the well-known website Topix that he would pay $5,000 in cash for the murder of Melissa Jones Davis.

The request allegedly included the hired killer would be required to conceal the body.

In court Thursday, Scoville told Winchester the trial would last “a couple days.” Little more was said except to set the date for Sept. 16.

Hall is currently released on a $75,000 fully-secured bond with a monitored condition release (MCR).

During his July court appearance, Hall and Scoville explained Hall planned to move to Knoxville to take classes for the Law School Admission Test (LSAT).

Court officials told Winchester that Hall could not be monitored from Knoxville.

“He’s charged with solicitation to commit murder,” said Commonwealth’s Attorney Allen Trimble during that July hearing.  “(He’s) trying to get further away from the reality of what he’s accused of.”

It was suggested that Hall take these classes at the University of Kentucky; however, Hall said these classes were only held at the Knoxville campus of the University of Tennessee.

“I understand that but due to the alleged allegation we have to have some type of monitoring,” Winchester said.

It was agreed Hall could attend these classes.

But JailTracker records show Hall was arrested Dec. 6 for contempt of court, libel/slander resistance to order — and released three days later on an unknown bond.

According to Kentucky State Trooper First Class Don Trosper, Hall turned himself in at KSP Post 11 in London after the intended victim saw the post and notified police.

He was arrested in May 2013 by KSP Detective Richie Baxter and jailed at the Whitley County Detention Center.

Trosper said when the comment was traced back to Hall by law enforcement, the intended victim didn’t think it was credible at the time.

Trosper added the investigation took approximately five months, because time was needed to trace the origin of the post through Internet service providers and websites.