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Police: Man convicted of child abuse for forcing 3 grandsons to hike Grand Canyon fatally shot


INDIANAPOLIS — An Indianapolis man convicted of child abuse in 2012 for forcing three grandsons to hike the Grand Canyon has been shot to death, police said.

Christopher Carlson, 50, was found shot multiple times Friday evening in an alley on the city's north side, the Indianapolis Metropolitan police Department said in a news release. Detectives did not immediately have any suspects in the slaying.

Carlson's relatives stated he was the same man convicted in federal court of child abuse for forcing his grandsons — then ages 8, 9 and 12 — to hike 19 miles in the Grand Canyon in August 2011, Sgt. Christopher Wilburn said Sunday.

The boys testified that Carlson kicked or hit them if they were too slow on the hike.

Carlson said at the time he treated the boys roughly but denied being criminally negligent or endangering them.

"I love my grandchildren greatly," Carlson said at his sentencing. "I wanted to afford these children a beautiful opportunity at a young age to experience something magnificent."

He served more than two years in prison.

A federal appeals court rejected Carlson's argument that the evidence wasn't sufficient to convict him and that the jury wasn't properly instructed. The U.S. Supreme Court declined to review the case.

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