Day two of Terrence Roach's murder trial began with an explanation and a confession caught on tape.
An interview between Roach and Detective Brent Melton was played for the jury. The interview took place shortly after Roach was arrested in March 2017.
In the recording, Roach is heard speaking to his mother on the phone, in private, in the interview room.
Roach can be heard on the phone telling his mom, "It didn't go the way I planned." He said he was trying to get payback on Cara Beckerle for setting up his dad.
Cara Beckerle is the mother of Aleah Beckerle. She previously dated Roach's father, Demarco.
In the recording, Roach said Aleah died from suffocating by covering up her mouth.
"I didn't plan on killing her ... She died on her own," said Roach.
While the recording played in the courtroom, members of Aleah Beckerle's family began to get emotional.
Shortly after the interview was played for the courtroom, Roach's attorney Glenn Grampp began his cross examination of Detective Melton. Specifically, he started by going step by step over the time line Roach admitted to in the recording.
"You don't really believe that, do you?" said Grampp.
"I believe that 100 percent," replied Melton.
Grampp argues there's little physical evidence supporting Roach reaching through a window to take Aleah, as he admitted in multiple recordings with Melton and on phone calls to his mom.
Testimony puts Aleah's mom, Cara Beckerle, her sister, and a dog asleep in the next room and Grampp says no one woke up.
"There's no signs of forced entry and they want you to believe that my guy came in through that window. The evidence would be that window was locked. There's no damage to the window," said Grampp.
The state presented evidence that puts Roach's DNA on duct tape and a cigarette butt found in the attic at the abandoned house on S. Bedford Ave. where Aleah's body was found.
Prosecutor Nick Hermann says that's important to the state's case. "Obviously it excludes everyone else in the world. It shows he was there and he was the one using the duct tape as he said in his confession."
Detective Melton is still on the stand. His first interview with Roach will be played for the jury. Yesterday the jury heard the second interview.— Stuart Hammer (@StuEyewitness) May 22, 2018
Testimony is continuing in the courtroom.
You can follow Eyewitness News reporter Stuart Hammer for updates on the trial throughout the day
(This story was originally published May 22, 2018)
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