Biden Hunter Trial: Hallie Biden “panicked” when she found her gun

Legend, Hallie Biden pictured arriving at Hunter Biden’s trial on Thursday with her husband

  • Author, Bernd Debusmann
  • Role, in class

Hunter’s ex-girlfriend said she ‘panicked’ when she searched his car and found a gun – a moment that set off a chaotic series of events that landed the president’s son in front a federal court.

Hallie Biden, who is also the widow of the defendant’s late brother, Beau, said she discovered the gun amid piles of clothing and trash in the glove compartment of Hunter Biden’s truck.

Ms Biden, 50, also told the court she was “embarrassed and ashamed” that she herself started smoking crack after Mr Biden, 54, introduced her to the drug.

This is the first trial of the son of a sitting US president. He faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted.

Biden Hunter has pleaded not guilty to three charges related to his possession of a firearm while allegedly using drugs.

He is accused of knowingly lying on federal documents when he purchased the revolver and ammunition at a gun store in Wilmington, Delaware, on October 12, 2018.

His defense team says he was recovering at the time. So it was true when he indicated on the documents that he was not a drug user.

On Thursday, the court heard from Hallie Biden, a central figure in the case who became romantically involved with the defendant shortly after the 2015 deaths of her brother and husband.

In detailed and often emotional testimony, she spoke of her husband’s “volatile” and “unstable” relationship, as well as their struggles with drug use and their agonizing battles to recovery.

Worried after seeing Mr. Biden looking “exhausted” and fearing he might relapse into crack cocaine use, Ms. Biden told the juniors that she searched his truck early on the morning of October 23, 2018 – which ‘she had often done.

There, among piles of clothes and trash, she found “remains” of crack cocaine and drug paraphernalia.

“Oh, and the gun, of course,” she added.

Almost instantly, she recalls, panic set in.

“I didn’t want him to get hurt, and I didn’t want my kids to find out and get hurt,” the mother of two said.

“I was afraid to touch it. I didn’t know it was loaded,” Ms. Biden added.

Frightened, she wrapped the .38-caliber Colt Cobra revolver in a leather pouch, stuffed it in a purple “little gift bag” and went to a nearby grocery store, where she threw it in a trash can .

“I realize it was a stupid idea now,” she said. “But I was panicking.”

Initially, she had not planned to tell Mr. Biden about what she had done. But when he woke up that morning, he realized he was missing.

“Did you take this from me Hallie,” read one angry text shown to neighbors. “You really need to help me think now, Hallie. This is very serious.”

At his request, she returned to the store to find the gun, but was unable to do so. She then filed a police report.

“I will take responsibility for this,” she texted him from the stage. “I don’t want to live like this.”

It was previously revealed that the gun was discovered by a man who often snooped around the grocery store’s refusal to collect recyclable items.

Ms. Biden also told the court that she did not see Mr. Biden using crack cocaine in the days before he purchased the gun and disposed of it.

While she was taking the test, Hunter Biden appeared to be looking intently in her direction.

He also turned to his wife, Melissa Cohen Biden, who had attended every day of the trial so far.

Legend, Hunter Biden and his wife, Melissa Cohen Biden, pictured entering court on Thursday

Hallie Biden also told the court that it was only after their relationship began that she learned of Mr Biden’s drug use.

She found crack cocaine in her home – where he frequently stayed – and then repeatedly saw him using drugs.

Crack, she said, left him “fidgety or nervous, but at other times it worked as well.”

She also verified that she herself had started using crack after he introduced her to the drug.

“It’s a terrible experience that I went through, and I’m embarrassed and ashamed, and I regret that time in my life,” she said.

Ms Biden said she stopped using the drug in August 2018, but he continued to use it.

The prosecutor asked questions Thursday about a text message Hunter Biden sent to Mrs. Biden the day after purchasing the gun, saying he was waiting for a dealer named Mookie.

She told the court this meant “he was buying crack”.

Two days after purchasing the gun, he texted Ms. Biden saying he was “sleeping on a car smoking crack.”

The series of texts also included several emotional messages from Ms. Biden in which she begged him to get sober.

“I’m afraid you’re going to die,” one message read.

The defendant’s lawyers explained the texts by suggesting their client lied about his drug use to avoid seeing Hallie Biden – noting she had no way of knowing what he was really doing at the time .

Under cross-examination, Ms. Biden confirmed that she did not see him using drugs at that time.

Father Lowell, Mr Biden’s lawyer, asked her whether the request to “help me get sober” could also have referred to alcohol – to which she agreed.

The prosecution’s case, however, rests on the need to convince the jurors that he was a drug addict.

Ms. Biden’s testimony was attended by Millard Greer, a former Delaware State Police lieutenant who recovered the gun, as well as Edward Banner, an 80-year-old retiree who found the gun while searching recyclable materials in grocery store trash cans.

The prosecution is expected to call two more witnesses, including an FBI expert and a DEA agent, before resting its case.

The defense team plans to call two or three witnesses before resting its case.

Mr. Lowell said no final decision had been made on whether Mr. Biden would testify.

In an interview with ABC News the same day, Mr. Biden said he would accept the outcome of his son’s trial and would not grant him a pardon if he was found guilty.

Biden Hunter will also face trial in California in September for non-payment of $1.4 million (£1.1 million) in taxes.

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