DNA of the man accused of killing three of Jennifer Hudson's family members could not be found on what's been identified as the murder weapon, a forensic specialist testified in court Wednesday.
Illinois State Police DNA specialist Pauline Gordon said that while low levels of DNA were found on the gun, they were not enough to include William Balfour. Gordon said the gun was likely handled by Hudson's brother, Jason Hudson.
"Does the absence of a DNA profile mean that a person never handled the item?" the prosecution asked.
"No," Gordon replied. "Some people shed skin cells at different rates. Environmental factors can affect DNA."
Balfour, 30, is charged with killing the Oscar-winning actress and singer's mother, brother and nephew. He's pleaded not guilty.
Trace evidence analyst Robert Berk told jurors he could not find no gunshot residue on clothes recovered from Balfour at the time of his arrest. He testified, however, that he did find some on the seat of Jason Hudson's SUV near where Hudson's nephew, Julian King, was thought to have been shot and killed.
The testimony was potentially damaging to the prosecution, and as their case winds down, experts say they doubt Balfour will take the stand.
"That is such a high-risk strategy, and especially given one of their main themes has to be the lack of physical evidence," said attorney Stuart Chanen.
Jennifer Hudson was in the courtroom wearing a white blouse over a shiny grey dress. She is also wearing a sweater and is carrying blankets. The courtroom on Wednesday was cold.
A recap of trial coverage so far:
- Day 8: Judge Bars Phones in Court
- Day 7: Neighbor Says Balfour Threatened Julia Hudson
- Day 7: Court Denies Jennifer Hudson Is Getting Star Treatment
- Day 6: Police Testify at Hudson Trial About Finding Gun
- Day 6: "Somebody Killed My Mother:" Hudson 911 Tape Released to Media
- Day 5: Balfour Girlfriend Says He Confessed to Killing Hudson Family Members
- Day 4: Witness: Balfour Repeatedly Threatened Hudson Family
- Day 3: Prosecutors Show Photos of Hudson's Slain Nephew
- Day 2: Cops Describe Finding Slain Hudson Family Members
- Day 1: Jennifer Hudson Breaks Down During Murder Trial