A second shot produce much of the same. No effect. So the wagon with a full charge of dynamite was pushed close to the cabin and the charge was lit. This time the results were different. The cabin was destroyed into broken charred remains. In the confusion, one Indian escaped, one was killed, and Christie stepped forward rifle blazing. The Marshals opened fire and the battle was over. Ned Christie lay dead. The body was taken to Fort Smith, photographed and put on display. Watt Christie came to claim it and drove off to give it a proper burial in the Rabbit Trap graveyard.
Now, since the only suspect in the Deputy Marshal Dan Maples murder trail was dead, there was no trial. It was not until 1918 that the truth became public knowledge. In a story in the Daily Oklahoman it was revealed that Tahlequah blacksmith Richard A. (Dick) Humphrey, a former slave adopted into the Cherokee Nation, had witnessed the murder. Humphrey, on his way home from work on the night in question, had started across a footlog below the wagon camp at Big Spring. In the moonlight, he saw Bub Trainor stooped over Ned Christie, who was passed out in the bushes. Trainor took off Christie's dark jacket and slipped it on over his white shirt. With revolver in hand, Trainor stood behind a tree. Like many others in the town, Humphrey was afraid of Trainor, so he merely stood hidden from Trainor's view and watched. What he saw was the assassination of Maples. His fear of Trainer kept him from coming forward to exonerate Christie. Trainor died in 1896. He was, according to one newspaper report, killed at Talala on Christmas night, by 4 negroes. It was a plot, and 4 shotguns did the work.
Humphrey still did not come forward as he was afraid of Trainor's gang and waited until he was 87 years old to tell his story to Daily Oklahoman reporter, 26 years after Ned Chrsitie's death. As with many stories from the old west, details sometimes get lost "in the mix". In this case, the facts - as reported by historical record - seem to mesh. When Bass Reeves was part of the posse pursuing Christie, all evidence and testimony seemed to support the capture and arrest of him. It wasn't until some time later that Christie's innocence was established.