Singer and Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Hudson is set to make a dramatic appearance in a Chicago courtroom as the trial begins today April 9th. Prosecutors say William Balfour, the estranged husband of Hudson’s sister Julia, murdered the three family members in a fit of jealous rage as she had started dating another man.
The bodies of mother Darnell Donerson, 57, and brother Jason Hudson, 29, were found in the family’s home in the Engelwood neighborhood of Chicago in 2008.
Jennifer’s nephew, Julian, was found days later in a vehicle several miles from the family home.
Judge Charles Burns will start questioning those wishing to make the jury today, trying to eliminate anybody who could be affected by the star’s presence.
Prospective jurors will face strong questioning, including whether they watched her on American Idol, belong to Weight Watchers, the dieting company where Hudson has been a spokeswoman for several years and if they have read her book.
Since the devastating murders took place in October 2008, Hudson has rarely spoken about the tragedy. She first opened up about the loss of her family on VH-1.
“I have to get adjusted to who I am now, so I can’t be another character if I don’t know who I am,” she said.
Although cameras will not be allowed inside the courtroom, it is expected that paparazzi will descend on the scene, another factor that could draw attention to the trial. Cole says that Hudson will ideally remain poised throughout the process.
“I think it would be too much to ask her to sit there like a stone, but at the same token, she has to keep she has to keep her emotions in check,” Cole told ABC News.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Jennifer and her family during this very difficult time.