Harris testifies about night of murders, Part 1

Published 05/24 2013 05:22PM

Updated 05/24 2013 06:10PM

PEORIA COUNTY -- For the first time, we're hearing from the man accused of beating five members of a Beason family to death in 2009. Friday, Christopher Harris took the witness stand in his own defense. WCIA-3's Ashley Michels has more from court.

Harris admits he was drunk and high on cocaine the night of the murders. He admits he was out looking for sex, but said those were not the reasons he went to Beason.

He says he went there to buy marijuana from Rick Gee. He says Rick was like a father to him and it was common for them to hang out late at night.

Chris says he walked into the home and didn't see anything unusual until he found Rick and Ruth dead. He says he also saw 11-year old Austin barely alive, laying in a pool of blood.

That's when he says 14-year old Dillen came at him with a knife. Chris says he ducked out of the way and picked up the tire iron, which was laying at Rick and Ruth's feet. He hit Dillen several times with it. He says he then got scared and left.

Until now, Harris has been very quiet and emotionless in court. Friday, on the stand, he got extremely emotional, breaking down in tears.

The judge says the case should wrap up by the end of next week. Then it will be up to the jury to decide Harris' fate. They all have to agree on 38 counts against him, including murder, armed robbery and aggravated battery.

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