Deshawn Gleaton Jr.

DeSHAWN GLEATON JR., 29, waits in the jury box before a hearing in May 2021. He is accused of first-degree murder in the July 24, 2020, shooting death of Hailey Christiansen in Norfolk.

MADISON — A Lincoln police detective is assembling a report containing cellphone data that could be used in the murder trial of a Norfolk man.

Joe Smith, Madison County attorney, said Monday in district court that a detective from the Lincoln Police Department has spent a “considerable” amount of time reviewing the data, which may be used as prosecutorial evidence during DeShawn Gleaton Jr.’s murder trial.

The data includes the location of specific cellphone activity and round trip time (RTT) data.

Smith called upon the detective to put together a report that examines Gleaton’s location and cellphone activity during a several-hour period on July 24, 2020, the day Gleaton allegedly shot and killed 29-year-old Hailey Christiansen.

On Aug. 31, Todd Lancaster, Gleaton’s attorney, filed a motion for any testimony regarding historical cellphone data and the information contained in it to be excluded, if not limited, in the presence of a jury.

The presiding judge must determine at a hearing before trial whether certain evidence is admissible. Madison County District Judge James Kube has presided over Gleaton’s case since it opened last year.

In his motion, Lancaster said that such testimony “is not scientifically valid and reliable to demonstrate a connection between historical cell tower records and the actual location of cellphone activity.”

Pursuant to Lancaster’s motion, a hearing was scheduled for Monday before Kube to determine the admissibility of the detective’s report in trial. But, according to Smith, the detective has not yet completed the report, so Monday’s hearing was continued.

Smith said he anticipated the report would be completed and provided to the county attorney’s office within a week.

The county attorney said both the prosecution and the defense would need time to review the report once it’s provided, but that a hearing could be held in the next couple weeks.

Matthew Headley, a Madison County public defender and co-attorney of Gleaton’s, appeared Monday on Gleaton’s behalf. Headley said he doesn’t “share the same optimism” as Smith in regard to when the report will be finished.

“My understanding as to how this process goes, it’s kind of intensive,” Headley said. “I want to make sure we have all the information before the hearing. A continuance of 30 days, I think, to get the data to our office and Mr. Lancaster, would be appropriate.”

Smith estimated the hearing would take at least six hours, based on discussions he’s had with another judge about similar evidentiary proceedings.

A new date for the motions hearing hadn’t been rescheduled as of Monday. Kube said a hearing date could be determined once the report has been made available to both the prosecution and defense.

Gleaton, 29, was not ordered to appear in court on Monday. He’s been housed at the Madison County Jail since being extradited from Sioux City, Iowa, on July 25, 2020.

He is accused of shooting Christiansen on the morning of July 24, 2020, at Christiansen’s Norfolk residence. Christiansen died at the hospital a few hours after the shooting, according to police reports.

Gleaton allegedly fled to Sioux City after the shooting, where he was apprehended by the Sioux City Police Department.

The Norfolk man is charged with first-degree murder, first-degree assault, possession of a firearm by a prohibited person, use of a firearm to commit a felony and tampering with a witness. Gleaton could face life in prison or the death penalty if he’s convicted of the murder charge.

As of Monday, his jury trial was scheduled to begin on Monday, Jan. 10, 2022. Smith previously indicated that Gleaton’s trial would likely last at least four days.