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Friends can’t fathom former Brigham City man involved in pot grow, dogfighting
By Scott Schwebke Apr 9, 2013
BRIGHAM CITY — A father and son killed in a triple homicide last week in Idaho are former Brigham City residents, say several people who knew the pair.
Brent L. “Bird Dog” Christensen, 61, his son Trent Jon Christensen, 32, and Yavette Chivon Carter, 27, were found shot to death Friday in a home near Holbrook, just north of the Utah border, that also contained a marijuana grow and pit bull-breeding operation.
Carter was Trent Christensen’s girlfriend.
Authorities have said Carter’s 2-month-old daughter was found under her arm and that she was apparently protecting the infant when she died. In addition, her 2-year-old daughter was also found unharmed. Both children have been turned over to one of the grandmothers.
The Box Elder County Sheriff’s Office is assisting the Oneida County Sheriff’s Office in Idaho with information associated with the victims, said Chief Deputy Kevin Potter, who declined to elaborate.
Robyn C. Halverson, of Ogden, said she was introduced to Brent Christensen through her cousins but hasn’t seen him in 30 years.
“He was just a fun-loving guy and was kind of wild,” she said Monday.
Halverson said she is unaware of Brent Christensen selling marijuana or participating in dogfighting.
“It’s not like his personality to be involved in dogfighting,” she said. “He was a kind person. I can’t imagine him being involved in that.”
Halverson also doesn’t believe Trent Christensen participated in criminal activity.
“He was a wonderful young man who was raised right,” she said. “He was at the wrong place at the wrong time.”
Brigham City resident Chad Herbert, who is Halverson’s cousin, said Brent Christensen is a longtime family friend.
“He was a good, good man,” Herbert said, adding that Brent Christensen had several occupations, including truck driver, construction worker and welder.
Trent Christensen attended Box Elder High School, he added.
Oneida County Sheriff Jeff Semrad has said cash and 38 marijuana plants valued at $95,000 were in the house where the three bodies were found. The home was still being examined for evidence Monday.
Semrad has also said 64 pit bulls at the property were used for fighting and that some were being boarded by Brent Christensen for other people. He said the names police have come across are not local but are from other parts of Southern Idaho and Northern Utah.
Semrad could not be reached for comment Monday regarding specifically where in Northern Utah the dog owners reside.
Meanwhile, the Idaho Humane Society in Boise was bracing Monday evening for the arrival of pit bulls removed from the home, said Hannah Parpart, the organization’s communications and outreach coordinator.
The first task of the Humane Society staff will be to evaluate the physical condition of the dogs.
“We don’t know what we are looking at,” Parpart said. “We’ve heard they are not in the best medical condition.”
Semrad said Brent Christensen appears to have made a living through dogfighting and growing marijuana, but he also worked odd jobs occasionally on local farms, so some neighbors in the rural area knew him.
Brent Christensen was sent to prison for drug-related crimes and had even done a stint in rehab, his brother Bruce Christensen told the Idaho State Journal of Pocatello.
“He was a good father at one time, and he really loved his ex-wife,” Bruce Christensen said. “He just had a bad drug problem.”
Early into the investigation of the killings, Oneida County Sheriff’s Office officials said they wanted to talk to the drivers of separate blue and red semitrailers seen at the Christensen property earlier in the week, the Idaho State Journal reported.
Semrad said the driver of a blue semitrailer contacted authorities Saturday and provided additional information. Law enforcement authorities are still looking for the driver of a red semitrailer and anyone who attended an Easter party at the house on March 31.
Anyone with information about the case is urged to call the Oneida County Sheriff’s Office at 208-766-2251 or text a tip to 208-815-0120.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.