Preliminary Hearing Held for Murder Suspect on Amended Charge

A preliminary hearing was held Monday in Sheridan County Circuit Court for Christian Torres, who is charged with second degree murder for allegedly killing his father, 47-year-old Edgar “Eddie” Jones at a home in Dayton on July 27, 2021. Torres attempted to flee to Billings, Montana in his father’s truck, but crashed the vehicle near Hardin, Montana. Torres stated to a Montana State Trooper that he had killed his father in Dayton. Torres was 15-years of age when the alleged crime occurred – he is being tried as an adult. The case was remanded to Circuit Court for a preliminary hearing because Sheridan County Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Christopher LaRosa amended the charge from second degree murder to first degree murder. First degree murder is punishable by life imprisonment when the individual convicted of the crime was under the age of 18 at the time of the offense.

Sheridan County Sheriff’s Deputy Boot Hill was the lone witness for the prosecution at Monday’s hearing. During testimony, Hill said that Eddie Jones was not the defendant’s biological father but rather a state assigned guardian. Hill testified that the firearm that was used to kill Eddie Jones was a .40 caliber semi-automatic pistol and the autopsy confirmed that Jones was shot once in the back while sitting on the bed in his bedroom and that the firearm belonged to the defendant’s brother Riley Jones.

During the course of the ongoing investigation into the case, Deputy Hill testified that they have taken into evidence a backpack belonging to the defendant that contained a notebook with references to “Star Wars” execution orders and terminology from various video games. There were what was described as cryptic messages in the notebook and a checklist or inventory of many of the items that were found at the crash site near Hardin. Circuit Court Judge Shelley Cundiff determined that there was probable cause to bind the case over to District Court on the amended charge of first degree murder.

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