Carruth trial: Day 27
Both sides rest case in murder trial
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- Testimony concluded Tuesday in the murder trial of former NFL player Rae Carruth, who is accused of plotting the killing of a woman who was eight months pregnant with their son.
If convicted in the November 1999 murder of Cherica Adams, Carruth, 26, could get the death penalty.
Both sides rested their cases Tuesday afternoon, and Judge Charles Lamm scheduled closing arguments to begin Thursday morning after a day off.
Adams died a month after she was shot, but the baby survived and lives with Adams' mother.
Prosecutors contend Carruth had Cherica Adams killed because he didn't want to pay child support. The defense contends Carruth wasn't involved in the killing and was looking forward to the baby's birth.
As testimony ended, the defense on Tuesday continued to try to cast doubt on the credibility of a former girlfriend of Carruth's, calling the woman's mother to the stand.
Amber Turner testified last week for the prosecution that Carruth, then a member of the Carolina Panthers, warned he would have her killed if she didn't have an abortion in 1998.
Barbara Turner testified that her daughter miscarried a 1997 pregnancy by Carruth, but said she didn't know about a later pregnancy that her daughter said ended in an abortion.
She said it was Carruth, introduced to her family by her young son while Carruth played college football in Colorado, who told her about the 1997 pregnancy.
"My daughter was having a difficult time telling me," she said.
During cross-examination, prosecutor Gentry Caudill asked Barbara Turner if her daughter told her about the second pregnancy.
"No," she said, adding that she learned about it when her daughter described it on the witness stand.
As she left the stand and headed past the defense team's table, Barbara Turner gave a small, tense smile and mouthed "I love you" to Carruth. He watched her walk past, then gazed down with a similar smile.