General News

Suspect convicted in Jennifer Hudson's family murder case

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May 11, 2012 | 2:15pm EDT

The Dreamgirls star's estranged brother-in-law, William Balfour, pleaded not guilty to allegations holding him responsible for the shooting deaths of the singer/actress' three family members in their native Chicago, Illinois in October, 2008.

The bodies of Hudson's 57-year-old mother and brother Jason, 29, were discovered in the family's home and her nephew Julian King's body was found three days later in an abandoned SUV (Sports Utility Vehicle).

His trial began on 23 April (12) and Hudson and her sister Julia, who split from Balfour in February, 2008, were the first two witnesses called to the stand by prosecutors.

During Julia Hudson's testimony, jurors heard how Balfour had allegedly threatened multiple times to kill her family in the months leading up to the tragedy.

His defence team argued that the prosecution had no DNA proof to link Balfour to the crimes and that gunshot residue found in the suspect's car was not enough to pin the murders on him.

The case was handed to the jury on Wednesday (09May12) and after two days of deliberations, they convicted Balfour of the brutal slayings on Friday (11May12).

The 30 year old was also found guilty of charges of home invasion, residential burglary, possession of a stolen vehicle and aggravated kidnapping.

As the verdict was read out in court, Oscar winner Hudson broke down in tears and had to be comforted by her fiance, David Otunga. Her sister Julia was also present for the verdict.

Balfour will be handed a mandatory life sentence in prison without parole at a later date.

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