LAFAYETTE — A key witness in Tyler Benoit's murder trial testified on Wednesday morning that he named his friend as the shooter only after a detective said he could be arrested and his kids could be raised by someone else if he withheld information, according to The Advocate.
The jury trial began Monday, but on Wednesday, Benoit's attorney suggested his client was misled by police into confessing to a crime he doesn't remember committing.
Brian Eddington got into a fight with his girlfriend minutes earlier and told Sgt. Todd Borel of Lafayette Police Department the he did not see who fired the single shot that killed Christon Chaisson in the parking lot of Rosa Parks Transportation in the early morning hours of August 12, 2017.
The jury heard Borel testify, watched the police interview and heard Eddignton's testimony Wednesday morning, they say.
Benoit's attorney, Thomas Alonzo, objected to the jury watching the entire police interview, saying Eddington only named his client as the shooting after being "threatened" by the police officer.
The 15th Judicial District Judge Marilyn Castle said, "And the jury's going to hear that," after overruling Alonzo's objection.
Eddington eventually named Benoit, his lifelong friend, on four different occasions during the police interview as the person who shot Chaisson. He did not name any other people who were in the parking lot at the same time of the shooting.
Eddington said his girlfriend pulled his shirt from behind, and he turned around and pushed her away. The woman fell to the ground hard and hit her head, Eddington said.
Chaisson intervened as Eddington and another person attempted to help the woman to her feet.
State prosecutors Alisa Gothreaux and Roya Boustany says that's when Benoit and another friend, Gavin White, got involved.
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