Testimony concludes in Chick-fil-a murder trial

By Chuck Weber email

WEST PALM BEACH, FL (WFLX)-Testimony wrapped up Friday in the second trial for a man accused of killing an 18-year old Chick-fil-a employee. The current jury heard something never presented to a jury which could not reach a verdict in the case earlier in the year.

Jessie Lee Miller is on trial for the murder at the Chick-fil-a restaurant at the Palm Beach Mall in 1999. 18-year old Nicholas Megrath was bound with duct tape and shot in the head, during a robbery at the restaurant.

Friday defense attorneys called Otto Wright to the witness stand. Back in 2003, Wright was convicted of being the lookout in the Chick-fil-a murder.

With Wright on the stand, Assistant Public Defender Adrienne Ellis played a taped statement Wright had given to detectives. Wright's taped statement was not allowed to be presented as evidence during Miller's trial earlier this year.

In the statement, Wright named two men responsible for the robbery and killing at the mall. Neither of the men was Jessie Miller.

But under questioning from prosecutors, Wright said he lied in that statement to save himself. He said detectives told him those other two men were accusing him of the murder.

Assistant State Attorney Barbara Burns asked Wright, "Did you use those names only because Detective Coffin and Detective Fraser indicated they were indicating you?"

"Yes, ma'am," Wright replied. "I tried to shift the blame, yes ma'am."

Later one of the detectives who took Wright's statement, Investigator William Fraser, returned to the witness stand. He said the other two men never implicated Wright. Fraser said he was using a legitimate police technique to get Wright to confess. And Fraser said there was no physical evidence on the other two men.

In the case against Jessie Miller, prosecutors are pinning their hopes on handwriting left at the scene they say is Miller's, and the threats they say Miller made against the victim Megrath. Closing arguments are set for Monday morning.