Oneonta Arson, Murder Trial Details; Day 3
Objection over whether or not Gabriel Truitt’s attorneys had seen a video of Gabriel's brother Terrence Truitt speaking with Oneonta Police Officers in February 2018 cut short Terrence’s testimony Monday afternoon.
Terrence informed the court that the testimony he would give would be at odds with the statements he gave to the grand jury and police. “He had a sworn affidavit saying he lied,” said District Attorney John Meuhl. County judge Brian Burns advised him that he may have already committed perjury and that he did have the right to remain silent, as well as a chance to seek council.
Follwing a 20 minute recess, during which Terrence allegedly spoke with an attorney provided for him and took the witness stand, he was asked by Meuhl, "Would you say you’re protective of your brother?” Terrence responded, “Of course”.
He also told the jury that he picked up Gabriel from the Oneonta Police station, where his brother was being held following his arrest for fighting outside of the Sip & Sail Tavern, and that the two went to the Red Apple for cigarettes. “He was upset that he couldn’t find his keys,” said Terrence.
“Do you remember telling police that he was upset over fighting with Heather Engler?” Meuhl asked.
“I did not tell you that,” Terrence said. “You are lying.”
Muehl attempted to show the video of the interview, but Public Defender Michael Trossett objected, saying he hadn’t seen the video.
“Their certificate of compliance indicated the video had been sent,” said Burns. “I can’t understand how on day six of this trial, you’re claiming you haven’t seen it.”
The jury was dismissed for the day, and the tape was made available to the defense. Terrence’s testimony will resume in the morning.
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