Brother-in-law of victim testifies in triple homicide trial

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HAMILTON COUNTY, Tenn. (WDEF) — On the third day of the trial for one of the men accused in the 2014 Lookout Valley triple homicide, a relative of one of the victims takes the stand.

Derek Morse is accused of killing Caleb Boozer, Jon Morris and John Lang in April 2014. During testimony on Thursday, Morris’ brother-in-law, Brandon Jackson, says he saw Morse’s car right before the shooting.

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“I came out and they were my father in law and Jon was at the motor home. They had been smoking weed and drinking and I heard a car come up the road and I look and it is his Hyundai,” Jackson said.

He says he knew it was Morse’s car because he had damaged it a couple days earlier after a run in at Food Lion.

“The reason why I recognized it was because there was a dent on the roof where I hit it with a tire arm,” Jackson said.

Jackson says his brother-in-law and another friend wanted to jump Morse over twenty dollars. They wanted to do that in Food Lion’s parking lot. The plan was for Jackson to hide, before Morse could see him.

“He might have seen us coming up and he hit his brake lights and lit us up,” Jackson said

“Lit us up what?”a lawyer asked.

“With his brake lights. I hit the tire arm because I knew he had a pistol on him,” Jackson said.

He says Morse then shot at them.

“Me and Dan trying to get him back, trying to get him out of the car and he opens the door and starts shooting. I jump in the car, with Jon in the passenger side and we take off,” Jackson said.

The day of the triple homicide, Jackson says he did not see Morse get out of the car right before the incident, but a previous statement said otherwise.

“I wrote how he jumped out of the car.”

“Is that what you saw?” asked the prosecutor.

“No,” Jackson said.

“That is not what you saw. Okay.”

He also had previously told a Judge he had seen Morse with a gun.

“Did you tell the judge that?”

“Yes.”

“Did you see Derek with a gun?

“No,” Jackson said.

Other people who testified on Thursday included someone who witnessed the Food Lion incident, and people who deal with surveillance video and different Lookout Valley businesses.