Belfast Telegraph

Friday 28 November 2014

Hudson family accused 'in tears'

Singer and actress Jennifer Hudson has attended the trial of the man accused of murdering her mother, brother and nephew (AP)
Singer and actress Jennifer Hudson has attended the trial of the man accused of murdering her mother, brother and nephew (AP)

The man accused of killing the family of Oscar winner Jennifer Hudson appeared to cry at his trial when prosecutors displayed graphic photographs of the youngest victim, Hudson's seven-year-old nephew.

It was the third day of testimony in the trial and the first time Hudson's former brother-in-law, William Balfour, has appeared to show any emotion. Balfour dabbed his eyes with a tissue in view of the jury as pictures of the blood-soaked body of Julian King appeared on a large screen.

Balfour was estranged from his wife, Hudson's sister, at the time of the 2008 killings. Balfour, 30, has pleaded not guilty to murdering Hudson's mother, brother and nephew.

Hudson spent much of the morning outside the courtroom as prosecutors showed the photographs of Julian. She entered the courtroom after the photos were shown.

Prosecutors claim Balfour targeted the family in a horrific act of vindictiveness against his ex-wife, Julia Hudson, the mother of Julian. They believe he became enraged by balloons he saw at the home that he thought were from her new boyfriend.

Julia Hudson testified on Monday that Balfour was so prone to jealousy, he even became angry when Julian kissed her.

"He'd say, 'Get off my wife,'" she said.

Defence attorneys have said the killing could be connected to alleged drug dealing by Hudson's brother.

Prosecutors contend Balfour went inside the Hudson family house in Chicago on October 24, 2008, and shot Hudson's mother and brother. Investigators say he then drove off in Jason Hudson's sport utility vehicle with seven-year-old Julian inside and later shot the boy in the head as he lay behind a front seat.

With no surviving witnesses to the murders, prosecutors must offer overwhelming circumstantial evidence that Balfour committed the crime.

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