Witness: Suspect 'in panic' on day of Hudson murders

May 7, 2012 (CHICAGO)

Prosecutors, who are close to winding up their case, arrived in court Monday morning for the 10th day of testimony in the Balfour trial. Their first witness, Quincy Brown, was a close friend of Balfour's during the months leading up to the day Jennifer Hudson's mother, brother and nephew were killed.

Two days before the murders, Brown testified that he saw Balfour with the gun prosecutors say he used to kill Darnell Donnerson, Jason Hudson and 7-year-old Julian King.

Brown said Balfour pulled out the pistol, slammed it on the table, and twirled in circles as he told Brown how much he hated Jason Hudson. The murder weapon belongs to Jason Hudson. Prosecutors say Balfour stole the gun weeks before the crime.

On the afternoon of the murders, Brown told the jury he spoke to Balfour on the phone three times. When asked by the prosecutor what Balfour's tone of voice was, Brown replied, "he was speed talking ... he was in panic, in a rush."

Brown said Balfour called him, desperately looking for help to fix his car. During the call, Julia Hudson beeped in on call waiting. Brown said she asked Balfour why he killed her mother and brother. Brown testified he said to Balfour, "are you for real, why would she blame you of all people?''' Brown said Balfour responded by saying, "because I got into it with the (expletive). Brown said Balfour was referring to Jason Hudson.

Brown is in the process of serving a federal prison sentence. He told the jury that prosecutors did not give him a deal for his testimony. Under cross examination, Brown also said that he didn't even talk to police until August of last year because at the time of the murders he was told by Balfour's friends not to talk to the police.

Late Monday afternoon, prosecutors played Balfour's videotaped police interview, which was done on the night of the murders. That interview does not contain a confession, but prosecutors say it does contain many lies.

On the day of the murders, Balfour was taken into custody around 6 p.m. and detectives interrogated him about his whereabouts that day. He said he went to the West Side where he spent the day at his girlfriend's house. A CTA employee said there is no videotape that shows Balfour at any bus stop or station and in addition there was no activity on Balfour's card that day.

Prosecutors allege that Balfour drove Jason Hudson's SUV to the West Side and that the SUV and the murder weapon were found there a couple of days later.

Balfour suggested on the videotape during the interview that Jason Hudson's drug business led to the murders. He said that Jason Hudson ran the Hudson home like a crack house.

The jury may get the case as early as Wednesday or Thursday.

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