March Parole Hearing Expected for Man Convicted in 2002 DeKalb County Murder

November 14, 2012
by: 
Dwayne Page
Christopher Nicholas Orlando
Melvin Eugene Turnbill

A 40 year old DeKalb County man, currently serving a 35 year prison sentence in the fatal shooting of Joshua Murphy in September, 2002, is scheduled for a parole hearing in March, 2013, according to the Tennessee Department of Correction

Christopher Nicholas Orlando, convicted of facilitation of first degree murder, is incarcerated at the Northeast Correctional Complex in Mountain City, Tennessee.

Murphy was shot and killed in a secluded area in the Laurel Hill Community at the end of Old Eagle Creek Road on Sunday, September 15, 2002. His body was discovered three days later. Officials said Orlando and a co-defendant, Melvin Turnbill suspected Murphy of stealing methamphetamine.

Turnbill, now 40 years old, pled guilty to facilitation of first degree murder prior to the trial of Orlando and received a twenty five year prison sentence. Under terms of the plea agreement, Turnbill agreed to testify for the state.

After a jury trial, Orlando was convicted and on June 23, 2004, the trial court sentenced him as a Range II, multiple offender to 40 years in the Tennessee Department of Correction. Orlando's motion for a new trial was denied on April 18, 2005. At this hearing, the trial court modified Orlando's sentence to reflect a sentence of 35 years, concluding that the imposed 40 year sentence was inappropropriate.

Turnbill is incarcerated at the Southeastern Tennessee State Regional Correctional Facility in Pikeville and will be up for parole in April, 2014, according to the Tennessee Department of Correction.

Orlando filed an appeal but the court of criminal appeals upheld the sentence in August 2006.

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