Man gets life in prison for 1995 murder along the Sacramento River Trail

James Watkins was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole on Wednesday.

Posted: Aug 25, 2021 3:30 PM
Updated: Aug 25, 2021 4:32 PM

SHASTA COUNTY, Calif. - James Earl Watkins has been sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole, according to the Shasta County District Attorney’s Office.

Watkins appeared in court on Wednesday to be sentenced after he pleaded guilty to a 1995 cold case murder of Christine Munro.

Watkins also admitted to three allegations for kidnapping, robbery and lying in wait, according to the DA’s Office.

RELATED: Man pleads guilty for 1995 murder of Christine Munro

Munro, a mother of four and a nurse, was jogging on the south side of the Sacramento River Trial on June 24, 1995, when she was attacked.

The case was reviewed in late 2019 and in January of 2020 fingernail scrapings were submitted. In June, a possible match returned and matched Watkins who was serving a 14-year sentence at the time in a Texas state prison for a robbery.

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