Blackwood Emails Suggest Effort to Operate Under Radar

Special Judge Jon Kerry Blackwood removed motions from a court file, ordered prosecutors to make no public mention of them, used email communication in lieu of orders and hearings and favored meetings in chambers over public hearings — all to avoid public scrutiny of his handling of the Christian-Newsom torture-slaying cases, documents reviewed by the Knoxville News Sentinel suggest. Blackwood's efforts to keep proceedings from the public eye are detailed in emails made public as part of an effort by Knox County District Attorney General Randy Nichols' office to request that Blackwood step down from the case, the News Sentinel reports.