Fiegehen may testify today in own defense

MINDEN -- A Carson City man accused of killing his ex-girlfriend's father may testify in his own defense today.

Christopher Fiegehen, 25, has not decided yet whether he will take the stand, defense attorney Richard Young said Thursday.

Fiegehen is accused in the Feb. 10, 2002, slaying of Al Chorkey and the maiming of Chorkey's wife, Lorelle, at their Becky Avenue home in north Johnson Lane. Lorrell Chorkey survived the attack.

Following testimony Thursday, Young claimed someone may have tampered with evidence at the crime scene and at Fiegehen's Carson City home.

The defense attorney questioned Douglas County sheriff's Sgt. James Richardson about apparent discrepencies in his testimony about a photograph taken of the Chorkeys' master bedroom.

Richardson said the photo shows live bullets near the bed. In his report written 10 to 12 hours after visiting the scene, he described the bullets as "spent."

"That means it's not a live round, is it?" Young asked.

"No, sir," Richardson replied.

"On the front, back, side or anywhere, is there any indication when this picture was taken?" Young asked. Richardson said there wasn't.

Later, Young told Judge Dave Gamble that three police officers had submitted reports "verifying, among other things, that they all saw mostly the same thing, mostly shell casings, on the floor next to the bed in the master bedroom."

"What I have in this case is a photograph taken some time later -- we don't know when because there is no date or time -- that shows three live rounds on the bedroom floor," Young said. "I have concerns that there has been tampering of evidence. My concerns are not limited to the shell casings."

Young also said Fiegehen's Ramsey Court home in Carson City was supposed to be under surveillance by police on the night of Feb. 10, 2002. "It was only after a break-in took place they found three spots of blood," he said. "I have concerns about the evidence."

"Bullets were supposedly found in the glove box. No DNA and no fingerprint testing was done on them," Young continued. The bullets were found in Fiegehen's glove box in his Ford Mustang, according to testimony.

Young also said no DNA testing was done of fingernail clippings taken from Al Chorkey, despite signs of a struggle.

Prosecutor Mark Jackson said he would address the allegations at the conclusion of the trial.

"I really wish I could respond, but because of the pending trial I really can't give a response at this time," said Jackson.

As the trial began to wind down after more than two weeks, Jackson and Young said they expected a few more witnesses to testify.

Fiegehen was arrested April 9, 2002, by campus security at Vincennes University in Indiana after a nationwide manhunt. Investigators believe he assaulted the Chorkeys after breaking up with Alane Dockstader, Lorelle Chorkey's daughter.


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