Eric Black, 23, who is believed to be the driver and is also charged with capital murder in the case, took the stand to testify against his friend Larry Woodruffe, 27, on Wednesday.
Black, who is awaiting sentencing, recalled going to church when he found out an innocent little girl was the one shot and killed, and not the men he was targeting.
According to Black, he and Woodruffe were sitting in the car selling drugs together on the day Jazmine died, as he said, they did almost every day.
He testified that a silver Dodge Avenger pulled in front of them and when the windows rolled down, he recognized the group of men he would sell drugs to. The men had been threatening him on Twitter, he said.
The car drove off and while nothing happened, Black took it as a threat and said he and Woodruffe went to retaliate.
The men switched out of the Cadillac they were in because the car was under Black’s fathers name. They switched into Black’s mother’s rental car which was a silver Kia Sportage.
Black testified that Woodruffe sat in the passenger seat with Black’s gun, and they found the car they believed the men they were searching were inside of. Black said they kept a distance because they didn’t want the men to see them. In court, Black said there were a lot of heads in the backseat, so they believed it was them.
He then said they followed the car onto the Beltway, and as they got closer, Woodruffe hung out of the passenger side and shot nine times. Black said they saw the silver Dodge swerving, so knew they had been successful in shooting someone.
The men switched cars again after Black said he went home and put the gun under his mattress and returned to the crime scene. There, he said he saw white sheets on the car and knew someone died.
It wasn’t until Black said he saw on the news, it was a little girl that was the one killed. Nervous and feeling guilty, Black said he went to church, which was something he didn’t regularly do.
At first police believed the suspect was a white man in a red pickup truck, so Black said he believed he got away with it. That is, until he was pulled over during a traffic stop.
The defense argued that Black’s testimony is out of self-interest in a shorter sentencing. In exchange for his testimony, the state agreed to five to 35 years as possible punishment, instead of 99 years.
Black’s credibility was also questioned, as he admitted to lying to police throughout the investigation and his interrogation. At one point, he told police, he tried to stop Woodruffe from shooting by hitting his hand down on the gun, but admitted to lying about it in court.
Jazmine’s mother, LaPorsha Washington also testified in court with her two daughters and told ABC13 she forgives Woodruffe.
SEE RELATED STORY: Jazmine Barnes’ mom speaks out after suspects arrested in connection with deadly shooting
“Even though I lost my baby, knowing another parent is losing their child is a horrible thing,” Washington said. “I feel horrible.”
Washington’s criminal record includes felony theft and possession of a controlled substance, which she spent time behind bars for.
“I don’t believe penitentiary or anything like that for anybody because I have been down that road, so I know how it feels to be locked up,” Washington said. “Knowing he’s going to lose his life is horrible. It’s really horrible.”
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Source : https://abc13.com/jazmine-barnes-child-shot-and-killed-near-walmart-shooting-houston-larry-woodruffe/11800605/