NEW ORLEANS — “On Friday, October 20th, the Orleans Parish District Attorney’s Office (OPDA) officially announced the conviction of Cristopher White for human trafficking, and 2nd degree murder tied to his involvement in the heinous 2018 murder of Charles Lee. Homicide Unit Chief Derbes led a trial team, which included OPDA Co-Chief of Trials Gregory Thompson, who with the help of NOPD was able to get justice for the Lee family and two young women trafficked by White.
The work to secure these convictions was truly a collaborative effort. NOPD Detective Michael Poluikis pieced together a complete picture of what happened using several different public and private surveillance cameras in the area and secured an arrest for murder. But the investigation did not stop there. Detective Eddie Williams with the Digital Forensic Unit utilized the most up to date technology and extracted valuable pertinent information and evidence from multiple cellular devices collected upon the White’s arrest in Florida.
OPDA reviewed the information taken from those devices and discovered that Christopher White was heavily involved in human trafficking. Veteran OPDA Detective Kevin Williams located two of Cristopher White’s victims to testify at trial and share the horror of what their life was like under this defendant’s thumb.
This conviction could not have been made possible without their hard work and the hard work of the prosecution team consisting of Homicide Unit Chief Matthew Derbes, Co-Chief of Trials Greg Thompson, Victim Witness Coordinator Vickie Landry, and Trial Assistant Erin Fuenning. We also want to commend the jury who served their city and Judge Rhonda Goode-Douglas who made sure to protect the rights of the many victims throughout this entire process, in addition to ensuring the defendant received a fair trial.
Commenting on the depth of the tragedy, Chief of Homicide, Matthew Derbes, expressed, “This case came to us as yet another tragic episode where an innocent life was senselessly taken. It was through the meticulous work of Detective Michael Poluikis that a comprehensive understanding of the incident was pieced together. This was made possible by utilizing numerous public and private surveillance footage around the crime vicinity, leading to a secured arrest.”
DA Jason Williams remarked, “The work that was done on this case by Chief of Homicide Matthew Derbes was nothing short of heroic. The OPDA extends its profound appreciation to the jury, who exemplified civic duty, and Judge Rhonda Goode-Douglas. Judge Goode-Douglas not only upheld the rights of the numerous victims throughout the trial but also ensured that Cristopher White was granted a fair trial.”
Christopher White faces a life sentence for the murder of Charles Lee and up to 90 years for human trafficking and obstruction of justice.”