PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Prosecutors went into detail Wednesday on how the defendant accused of killing a Temple University student tried to cover up the crime during day two of the murder trial. Joshua Hupperterz’s cousin took to the witness stand, appearing to explain how he and the defendant removed 22-year-old Jenna Burleigh’s body from the North Philadelphia apartment she was allegedly killed in.
Hupperterz is accused of brutally punching, stabbing and then strangling Burleigh at his apartment just as she was starting a new school year at Temple.
Prosecutors allege it happened after the two met at Pubb Webb near Temple, in the early-morning hours of Aug. 31, 2017.
Erick Carlson, Hupperterz’s cousin, took to the witness stand and testified he came over Hupperterz’s apartment that day to smoke marijuana when Hupperterz asked him to move a big plastic box prosecutors call a tote from his North Philly apartment to his mother’s house in Jenkintown.
Prosecutor Danielle Burkavage asked Carlson, “Did he tell you what was in the tote?”
“No, it was about 100 pounds,” Carlson responded.
“Did you ask questions about it?” Burkavage asked Carlson.
Carlson said, “No, I just said, ‘Dang, this is heavy.'”
The jury then saw video showing Carlson and Hupperterz carrying the tote to Carlson’s car.
Carlson testified they placed the tote in Hupperterz’s mother’s garage. They then drove back to Philadelphia, planning a fishing trip.
But defense attorney David Nenner argues there was another person in that apartment at the time of the killing — Hupperterz’s roommate.
“I really think based on the evidence I have from my client, it’s Jack Miley,” said Nenner.
On Thursday, the roommate is expected to take the stand at the Criminal Justice Center for the prosecution. But the defense has their own plan.
“I have, as you will soon see, hopefully, a lot of lies from him. It’s the same evidence against Mr. Hupperterz, they don’t have witnesses to what he did in that apartment,” said Nenner.
Still, prosecutors say they have no doubt Hupperterz is the real killer. Burleigh’s family agrees.
“We’re very pleased with the way the prosecution is laying out the case so far and we think they’re doing a great job,” said Ed Burleigh, Jenna’s father.