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Ex-police chief held on suspicion of killing wife

Former Idaho lawman is arrested after his spouse is found floating in their hot tub in Calimesa.

June 09, 2007|From the Associated Press

A former police chief was in custody Friday on suspicion of murder after his wife was found floating face down in their backyard hot tub in Calimesa, authorities said.

Blair Christopher Hall, 49, was arrested Thursday evening, about 12 hours after he called 911 to report that his wife was unconscious and needed medical help.

Riverside County sheriff's deputies pulled Cristi Lynne Hall, 46, from the water. She was pronounced dead at a hospital.

The cause of death was under investigation, but detectives had evidence she did not drown accidentally, said sheriff's investigator Jerry Franchville.

Hall was being held in lieu of $1-million bail and was scheduled to make his first court appearance Tuesday. It wasn't immediately known whether he had retained an attorney.

Hall was a police officer and detective in nearby San Bernardino in the 1980s.

He retired in 1994 after being shot in the leg by a would-be carjacker.

He moved to Idaho and became police chief in the city of Cascade. He held that post from 1995 to 1998 and was later convicted of embezzling about $20,000. He was sentenced to a year in county jail after pleading guilty to misuse of public funds.

Hall also briefly served as police chief in Emmett, Idaho.

After moving back to California, he worked as a security officer at a casino and most recently ran a private investigation agency in Calimesa.

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