Emotions are high as the trial of William Balfour—the man accused of killing the mother, brother and 7-year-old nephew of Jennifer Hudson—is underway.
Amidst long-running uncertainty as to whether or not Jennifer would testify, the Grammy and Oscar winner took the stand Monday and almost immediately broke down into tears when the prosecutor handed her a picture of her late mother, according to witness accounts.
Jennifer was reportedly able to keep her composure enough to answer questions for the prosecution, testifying that she had seen her family just days before the murders.
The singer noted that the family never liked William and that she in particular had made a concerted effort to keep her distance from him dating back to grammar school.
According to TMZ, Jennifer explained, “Where he was, I tried not to be. So if I saw him, I separated myself.”
While Jennifer and her sister Julia Hudson have suggested that William was violent toward her before the day he shot their relatives, a clear motive for the murders has yet to be revealed. However, Julia testified Monday that jealousy was always an issue.
She said that her former husband became jealous when she got gifts from other people, including her son, who was told not to kiss his mother. William’s nickname for the middle school student was "the little monster," she said.
As noted in The Chicago Tribune back in 2008, Balfour—who had already been arrested for possession of heroin and possession of a stolen vehicle— was listed in documents as “a depressed suffering man with an unhappy childhood and a lack of stability."