Day seven in the trial of a man accused of killing three members of singer/actress Jennifer Hudson's family brought testimony from neighbors who said they saw the defendent spying on the family and heard him threaten one of the victims.
"I heard him tell her that if she was to call police, he would kill her and her family," prosecution witness Maria Wilks testified.
William Balfour is accused of killing Hudson's mother, Darnell Donnerson; brother, Jason Hudson; and nephew, Julian King on Oct. 24, 2008. He has pleaded not guilty.
Another witness, Reginald Jones, said that in the summer of 2008, he was walking late at night near the Hudson home when he was startled by Balfour. Balfour was sitting on the rear stairs underneath the bedroom window of his estranged wife, Julia King.
Under questioning by defense, Jones said he would open the door to the Hudson home for customers seeking to buy drugs from Jason Hudson. He also said he helped prepare cocaine for sale.
Jennifer Hudson testified last week that she didn't know what her brother did for a living.
The defense had presented a theory that Jason Hudson's drug dealing could have led to the slayings.
Jones said he had a set of keys for the Hudsons' home and Jason Hudson's SUV, in which the body of Julian King was found.
"He was a good friend, like a son," the 55-year-old Jones said. "I loved him. I really did."
Jones also testified that he once called Julia Hudson "baby" in front of Balfour, and Balfour said, "I don't like anyone calling my wife baby."
Brittaney Simmons, who lived next door to the family, testified she heard gunshots near the home the day of the 2008 murders.
"Gunshots are common in the area," Simmons said. "I've never reported them."
The prosecution has presented nearly 470 different pieces of evidence in the trial so far. Little of it, however, connects Balfour directly to the slayings.
"That could really backfire for the prosecution. If I'm a defense lawyer in that position, they may stand up and count off the exhibits and put all of this evidence back in front of the jury and say over and over again, 'It doesn't tie back to Mr. Balfour. It doesnt' tie back to Mr. Balfour," attorney Stuart Chanen explained.
The last witness to take the stand Tuesday was a forensic investigator who matched the gun found in a field to the murder weapon. The defense says there's nothing to connect that weapon to Balfour.
A recap of trial coverage so far:
- Day 7: Court Denies Jennifer Hudson Is Getting Star Treatment
- Day 6: Police Testify at Hudson Trial About Finding Gun
- Day 6: "Somebody Killed My Mother:" Hudson 911 Tape Released to Media
- Day 5: Balfour Girlfriend Says He Confessed to Killing Hudson Family Members
- Day 4: Witness: Balfour Repeatedly Threatened Hudson Family
- Day 3: Prosecutors Show Photos of Hudson's Slain Nephew
- Day 2: Cops Describe Finding Slain Hudson Family Members
- Day 1: Jennifer Hudson Breaks Down During Murder Trial