Live Updates – Second Day of Elias Abuelazam Trial Underway in Flint, Mich
Update 8:56 AM- Testimony gets under way. Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton starts out by calling Alf S. Cronwell to the witness stand. Cronwell works for DHS and is currently on the joint terrorism task force. Cronwell is testifying about Abuelazam’s travels.
Update 9:07 AM – Leyton finished with his questions for Cronwell. Abuelazam defense attorney questioning Cronwell now about having to travel with passport, Abuelazam’s trips to Israel, and Custom and Borders Protection. Also asking if they had any active warrants for Abuelazam.
Update 9:10 AM – Defense asking if after August 2010 whether JTTF was still investigating this case.
Update 9:12 AM – U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officer (Davis?) from Atlanta takes the stand.
Update 9:15 AM – Prosecution asking about Customs and Border Protection getting call to track Abuelazam travels out of country. Agent identifies Abuelazam in picture as man they were asked to track.
Update 9:19 AM – Prosecution asking Agent about airport surveillance footage at gate.
Update 9:20 AM – Lights dim in courtroom. Surveillance video being shown from Hartsfield Airport in Atlanta. Discussing gates E-17, E-18 and which terminal they are in.
Update 9:32 AM – lights come back up, video done. Exhibit 67 introduced. A cell phone take at time Abuelazam was taken into custody. Prosecution done with witness. Defense questioning about preparation done for trial.
Update 9:34 AM – Defense asking Customs and Border Protection Agent about differences between agencies. Now asking about luggage screening processes and when, how luggage is subject to search.
Update 9:37 AM – Custom and Border Protection Agent dismissed from stand. New witness sworn in from Louisville International Airport. Captain of Police Department at Airport. Leyton asking about August 11, 2010 and about phone call received from Michigan State Police.
Update 9:41 AM – Leyton asking about unclaimed luggage from Delta baggage office. Captain took them back to his office, locked them up. Gave up possession of bags when Louisville Police Department came with search warrant to get bags.
Update 9:46 AM – Leyton presenting pictures of luggage to Captain for identification.
Update 9:49 AM – Leyton shows actual bags taken into custody at Louisville Airport. Airport tags and stickers still on them. Cross by defense begins.
Update 9:53 AM – Defense asking why bags were taken from flight that was from Detroit to Louisville to Atlanta to Israel. Captain of Louisville Airport Police said they were called by Michigan State Police and then went to baggage office to check.
Update 9:56 AM – Witness steps down from stand. Short recess called.
Update 10:34 AM – Recess over. Leyton calls Patrick Young, Detective Sergeant from the Michigan State Police, to the stand. Leyton asks him for his training background.
Update 10:37 AM – Leyton asks, and Young confirms, he was part of task force to investigate serial stabbings case. Then moves onto questions about luggage from suspect in Louisville airport. One of his assignment was to recover the luggage associated by the suspect.
Update 10:44 AM – Discussing the luggage, where it was kept and secured, and when it was recovered.
Update 10:48 AM – MSP Detective verifies that luggage belonged to Abuelazam through documents, divorce papers inside.
Update 10:56 AM – Defense cross examination about why Detective was relieved when he returned with luggage and how he got assignment to go pick up.
Update 11:02 AM – MSP Detective steps down after answering questions from Defense about Louisville search warrant.
Update 11:05 AM – New witness sworn in. Tony Sahwany, a retired shop worker and carpenter. Also owned a grocery store in Burton. Prosecution just asks him if he’s related to defendant. He is Abuelazam’s uncle. Just identifies defendant.
Update 11:07 AM – Being asked about where Abuelazam was born, and when he first came to U.S. Sahwany now being asked about when Abuelazam returned to Michigan.
Update 11:09 AM – Sahwany being asked about family in Virginia and Abuelazam’s time while in Virginia. Testifies that he let Abuelazaam live in house next door that he owned.
Update 11:12 AM – Sahwany being asked how he helped get Abuelazam situated when he got here. Besides place to live, he helped him financially and helped get him vehicle. Says vehicle was Jimmy and two tone in color. Witness is color blind but still able to identify vehicle. Witness paid $1,500 for the car.
Update 11:18 AM – Sahwany also answers questions about helping his nephew, Abuelazam, get a job through a friend of his.
Update 11:21 AM – Witness testifying on how he was trying to motivate Abuelazam to do better, and how he could help him.
Update 11:24 AM – Sahwany testifies about when he made decision to send Abuelazam back to Israel. Was after suspect had returned from a trip to Virginia. Sahwany wanted Abuelazam to continue working and Abuelazam wanted to quit the job he was working.
Update 11:27 AM – Witness testifies about getting airline ticket to send him back home to be with his mother. Sahwany testifies that he drive Abuelazam to airport, but first decide to take Jimmy SUV back to friend he purchased it from.
Update 11:35 AM – Sahwany says the plane ticket was between $2-3,000. He purchased ticket by credit card. Says Abuelazam gave him $1,000 towards the ticket purchase from a gold bracelet he helped him sell so he could have money.
Update 11:37 AM – Cross examination by defense begins. Starts out by questioning witness role in his family.
Update 11:41 AM – Sahwany talks about throwing Abuelazaam out since he doesn’t want to work od ddo anything. Brings up bar fight Abuelazam was previously involved in.
Update 11:47 AM – Prosecution now asking questions again. Witness testifies about his girlfriend discussing string of attacks with hi, and his friend calling saying the police were there asking questions and searching car.
Update 11:51 AM – George Jabron called to stand. He’s the one who sold car to Sahwany.
Come back to WFNT.com again tomorrow morning where we’ll be live blogging again!