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Saturday, May 8, 2010

[CA][ID] Ex Detective/ Ex Police Chief Hall on trial for murdering his wife of 30 years, Cristi Lynne Hall

Previous 2007 Post:
[CA][ID] Ex Det., former Chief Hall arrested for murder of wife Cristi

The Press-Enterprise
By Paul Larocco
10:00 PM PDT on Thursday, May 6, 2010
A former San Bernardino police detective charged with drowning his wife in their backyard Jacuzzi didn't expect a startled witness - peering through an opening in a block wall - to thwart his cover-up, prosecutors told jurors Thursday. Blair Christopher Hall, 51, faces a single count of murder in the June 7, 2007, death of Cristi Lynne Hall behind their Calimesa home... Cristi Hall and her husband of nearly 30 years had gone out to the backyard hot tub that weekday morning just after 6 a.m., intending to bathe as their shower was being remodeled, [Deputy District Attorney Burke] Strunsky said. Their 22-year-old daughter slept upstairs. According to Strunsky, the couple was in the tub together when the defendant forcibly pushed Cristi Hall's head under the water and held it... Injuries to Cristi Hall included "massive bruising" and head lacerations... She also had some of her husband's DNA under her fingernails, which Strunsky said pointed to her fighting back. Blair Hall eventually got out of the tub, toweled off and went inside to wake his daughter. He then returned outside and wailed at the discovery of his lifeless wife, according to the prosecutor... The key prosecution witness is a Navy computer technician who was on leave visiting her mother's home abutting the Hall's property. Lindsay Patterson was already awake when she heard what she called a "very panicked" scream. She looked through a small diamond-shaped opening in the 5 ½-foot-tall block wall that separated the backyards. She said she saw a man push a woman's head down into water before getting out alone with an expression of rage... [Full article here]

Contra Costa times
Mike Cruz
Posted: 05/06/2010 06:25:09 PM PDT
Updated: 05/07/2010 03:17:04 PM PDT
[Excerpts] Lindsay Patterson was home on leave from the Navy in June 2007 when she witnessed the early morning death of the wife of a former San Bernardino narcotics detective in the couple's hot tub. First there was a scream. Then splashing and gurgling noises. Upon looking through a cinder block fence into the neighbor's rear yard, Patterson saw Blair Christopher "Chris" Hall pushing a woman's head under water, say Riverside County prosecutors. "It was an older woman's very panicked scream. Something was definitely wrong," Patterson testified Thursday in the criminal trial for the woman's husband, Chris Hall in Riverside Superior Court. Prosecutors charged Hall, 51, with the death of his wife, 46-year-old Cristi Lynne Hall, who was found unresponsive and lying face down in the hot tub at their home in the 1200 block of Belle Road. During the trial's opening remarks, prosecutors described Cristi Hall's death to jurors as a violent betrayal by her husband of more than two decades. But defense lawyer Victor Marshall said the woman's death was the result of an accidental slip while bathing in the hot tub... Patterson told detectives she looked over the fence into the Hall's yard and saw Chris Hall as he held down a woman's head. Then, Chris Hall was sitting alone in the murky water and she couldn't see a woman. Patterson later peered through the decorative block and saw Chris Hall get out and dry off. She also saw his angry face... Medical Examiner Scott McCormick noted the cause of death of Cristi Hall was forced drowning... Her husband's DNA was found under the victim's finger nails... Hall started his career as a police officer in San Bernardino, where he was hired in 1982. He was promoted to narcotics detective in 1988 and medically retired in 1994 after being shot in the leg. He moved to Cascade, Idaho, to be the police chief but resigned in 1998. Chris Hall pleaded guilty to embezzling more than $19,000 from a grant program while in Cascade. From there, Chris Hall took a chief post in Emmett, Idaho... Most recently, Chris Hall started a records search business and his wife was a radiological technician... The couple had taken out life insurance policies: $750,000 on Cristi Hall and $1 million on Chris Hal... [Full article here]

By Mike Cruz
Posted: 05/05/2010 01:24:57 PM PDT
[Excerpt] ...A neighbor testified at a court hearing in November 2007 that she heard a panicked scream, looked over a brick wall into the backyard of the couple's home and saw Chris Hall in the hot tub and holding a woman's head under the water. The neighbor asked her mother to call 9-1-1, and authorities responded to the home in the 1200 block of Belle Road, in Calimesa. Cristi Hall was found unresponsive and lying face down in the hot tub... [Full article here]

Old article since last post:

The Press-Enterprise
June 9, 2007
[Excerpts] As a former San Bernardino police detective sits in jail on suspicion of killing his wife, the woman's brother says her family stands behind him. Blair Christopher Hall was arrested Thursday after his wife, Cristi Lynne Hall, died in a hospital... Cristi Hall's brother said Saturday he does not believe his brother-in-law is involved. "It's not something that's in his character, and we just want to say that we believe in him 100 percent," Lance Carlton said. "He should be home with us during this time... She was taking a bath in the Jacuzzi, and she slipped and fell," Carlton said. "And that's the end of the story"... The 48-year-old Hall, who runs a private-investigation firm in Yucaipa, retired from the San Bernardino Police Department in 1994 after being injured during a robbery while working as an undercover narcotics detective. Hall, his wife and three children moved to Idaho, where he became police chief of Cascade, a town of 1,000 people. He worked there several years in the late 1990s, but quit shortly before being convicted of embezzling $19,000 from a drug task force fund... "Chris is our family," Carlton said. "He doesn't deserve this"... [Full article here]
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence (IPV) abuse law enforcement public safety fatality fatalities murder accident accidental defense liar california]


  1. AnonymousJune 07, 2010

    When are people going to wake up to the behind the scenes domestic violence carried out by Police Officers. For Christi Lynnes family to be supporting her husband, when there is a witness to the incident, is unreal. As I learned, it is a uniform, it says nothing about the man wearing it. This is also what my ex-Police Officer told me and he appears to be a proud Police Officer. Protect and serve stopped at my front door.

  2. When is this case being retried? It is a travesty that this man appears to be getting away with murdering his wife.

    Press Enterprise
    Tuesday, May 18, 2010
    [Excerpts] With jurors deadlocked, a judge on Tuesday declared a mistrial for a former San Bernardino police detective charged with drowning his wife in their backyard Jacuzzi. Eight jurors voted to find Blair Christopher Hall guilty of murder; four favored acquittal. Riverside County Superior Court Judge Edward Webster dismissed the jury, which had deliberated for two days. Still free on $1 million bond as prosecutors seek a new trial, the 51-year-old left the courtroom surrounded his by daughters... The trial focused heavily on a single witness's account and differing interpretations of the injuries sustained by Cristi Lynne Hall... Prosecutors argued that Blair Hall, whom everyone called "Chris," held the victim's head under water as she thrashed about, then calmly dried himself off, went inside, awoke his daughter and came back outside as if he was just discovering the body. Defense countered that Cristi Hall, 46, had slipped, fell and hit her head on the concrete outside the tub during the brief time her husband had retreated to a restroom inside.... Lindsay Patterson had testified she heard a woman's piercing scream early that morning, causing her to peer through a small opening in the 5 ½-foot-tall block wall separating her mother's backyard with Hall's. She said she saw a man hold down the woman's head under water before getting out of the tub with an angry look. Minutes later, that man came back outside with someone else, screaming and crying... A new trial date will be set June 18, the same day Marshall said he'll seek a motion to dismiss the case... [Full article here]

  4. You are right. It's taking too long. And why would the neighbor lie. What could the jury have been thinking?

  5. AnonymousMay 13, 2011

    Here's to hoping this new jury can get it right!

  6. It is possible that someone could drown in a jacuzzi if that person had an existing medical condition. What this case has is an objective witness that has nothing to gain by her statement.

  7. Any idea which San Bernardino County Medical Examiner testified at the trial of Blair Christopher Hall? Any information will be greatly appreciated as it is related to another case yet to be resolved.


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