By Tony Hanson
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A key witness in the murder trial of the “Black Madam” has gone south on the prosecution, and she won’t testify at trial, which is scheduled to start this morning. But the judge has ruled the prosecution can present her testimony from an earlier hearing.
The prosecution says Theresa Gyamfi is a necessary witness — she testified at an earlier hearing that she traveled with her friend, victim Claudia Aderotimi, from London to Philadelphia for buttocks enhancement. They lay side by side during the procedure and her friend started suffering almost immediately and was dead within hours.
The defense argued the witness’ account should not be admitted because it can not be cross-examined. But the judge has ruled the defense had a full and fair cross-examination at the earlier hearing, so it comes in.
Defendant Padge Victoria Windslowe has pleaded not guilty.
There’s a gag order, but the defense has argued during pre-trial motions that Windslowe didn’t know the danger, there was no malice and this is not murder.