MADISON, Neb. -- The man accused of killing a 29-year-old Norfolk woman in 2020 has been found guilty.

DeShawn Gleaton Jr. was convicted of all five counts he was facing in Madison County District Court Tuesday.

A jury deliberated for several hours before finding Gleaton guilty of 1st-Degree Murder, 1st-Degree Assault, Possession of a Weapon by a Prohibited Person, Use of a Weapon to Commit a Felony, and Witness Tampering for the shooting of Hailey Christiansen.

He was out on bond at the time of the July 2020 shooting on Suspicion of Misdemeanor 3rd-Degree Domestic Assault and Trespassing.

He was later arrested in Sioux City, Iowa.

During closing statements Tuesday, Madison County Attorney Joseph Smith said the evidence presented throughout the trial shows Gleaton's actions were intentional and premeditated.

The prosecution's theory was Gleaton didn’t want Christiansen to testify against him in the domestic assault trial because he didn’t want to go back to jail.

Gleaton’s defense, led by Attorney Todd Lancaster, said during closing statements that some things presented during the trial were taken out of context; including apparent contradictory statements from neighbors who saw the incident and police reports.

Lancaster said the theory that Gleaton would kill Christiansen to prevent her from being a witness was unlikely because he would be risking higher penalties with a 1st-degree murder charge than a maximum of one year with a misdemeanor.

Attorney Joe Smith told News Channel Nebraska that it was a good outcome.

“This case deserved to be prosecuted the way it was, it deserved to be tried the way it was and it deserved what happened today and the family deserved that too, and they got it,” Smith said.

After the verdict, Hailey's family talked about how they will remember her. They say it wasn't just about Hailey, it was about her son as well.

"I think her little boy will feel much safer knowing that he don't have to worry, he don't have to be scared. He knows that he's not going to get out of jail and that was a big worry for him and now he's not going to have to worry about that," said Hailey's mother, Janet Christiansen.

Gleaton’s sentencing will be set for a later date.



A 30-year-old northeast Nebraska man has been found guilty of murder.

DeShawn Gleaton Jr. was convicted in Madison County District Court on Tuesday afternoon.

Gleaton was found guilty on five counts related to the 2020 murder of 29-year-old Hailey Christiansen of Norfolk. Jurors began deliberating shortly after noon on Tuesday, returning a verdict just before 3:30 p.m.

The jury convicted Gleaton of all five charges, including first-degree murder, in June of 2020.

The trial had been moved several times before beginning last week in Madison.