Lee asks for charges to be separated

Christopher Lee
Christopher Lee Mug shot

Former Harris Township supervisor Christopher Lee is still looking to have some charges in his federal trial separated from the rest.

In documents filed Monday in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, attorney Kyle Rude made arguments to sever his client’s child pornography charges from those of enticement of a minor.

Rude claimed that while the law does allow for the two charges to be linked in front of a jury, it does not require it, and pointed out that prosecutors do not contend that they were connected acts.

But even if they were associated crimes, Rude argued that trying them together would unreasonably prejudice a jury against Lee.

“In the present case, Mr. Lee is charged with two separate and distinct crimes,” he wrote.

The first two counts, enticing and transporting a minor for sexual activity, Rude said, are unrelated to the other three pornography-related charges. He said the pornography found on Lee’s computer was never a target of the investigation but was found while searching for a hypnosis video and with subsequent search warrants.

“Mr. Lee submits that the government will attempt to demonstrate his intentions for the minor’s visit to his home by introducing pictures and videos that were never seen by the minor nor discussed before the minor’s trip,” Rude wrote.

There were also questions of Lee’s ability to testify in his own defense on some charges but not others if the counts were severed.

Rude filed another motion seeking to suppress evidence in the child pornography case, saying the warrant was illegally obtained.

Lee has been incarcerated since October as additional charges have been filed and trial in the case was delayed.