Reporting Dana Kozlov
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Updated 05/16/12 – 8:43 p.m.
CHICAGO (CBS) – A Cook County judge has released the video of convicted killer William Balfour being questioned by police in the murders of Jennifer Hudson’s family members.
Balfour was convicted of first-degree murder last week in the slayings of Hudson’s mother, brother and nephew.
CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov reports the video of Balfour’s interview with police was a key piece of evidence for the prosecution.
The interview with Balfour took place the night Hudson’s family was killed on Oct. 24, 2008. Balfour allegedly shot and killed 57-year-old Darnell Donerson, 29-year-old Jason Hudson, and 7-year-old Julian King, because he was jealous his then-estranged wife Julia Hudson was seeing another man.
Police took Balfour into custody just hours after the murders, when Julian King was still missing.
Chicago police detectives didn’t waste time, taking Balfour’s picture and collecting his clothes as possible evidence, right after taking him into an interrogation room.
“Why am I here,” Balfour asked detectives.
“You’re here because your mother-in-law – your ex-mother-in-law and ex-brother-in-law were found dead,” a detective told him.
“What that got to do with me being here?” Balfour asked.
“That’s what we’re here to find out,” a detective said.
Balfour was still married to Julia Hudson at the time, although they were estranged. Police brought Balfour in for questioning four hours after the bodies of Hudson’s mother and brother were found, but while Julian King was still missing.
“What I’m interested in is this kid. Where’s the kid?” a detective asked Balfour.
“Ok. Here we go with this. I don’t know where he is. I don’t,” Balfour said.
Balfour was initially pretty calm. He didn’t ask for a lawyer and, early on, suggested Jason Hudson’s drug dealing was the cause of the murders.
“It was a drug house. What more do you expect? It was a drug house,” Balfour said. “You know, he created a lot of enemies over there.”
Detectives continued questioning Balfour and, after about an hour, began zeroing in on some apparent gaps in Balfour’s story.
“She also says she saw you with a .45 … with a gun, a .45,” one detective said.
“A couple months back, and she told you to put it up under the bed, and she never saw it again after you left,” the other detective told Balfour.
“She ain’t never seen me with no gun,” Balfour said.
Balfour allegedly stole that gun from Jason Hudson and used it to kill all three victims.
Balfour was charged with the crimes more than a month later, but never left custody. He was kept in jail on a probation violation until he was charged, and was then ordered held without bail until his trial last month.
He’s been convicted of first-degree murder in all three deaths and faces a mandatory life sentence.