PEORIA — The Chris Harris murder trial continued Friday with testimony from a state forensic scientist and from three women he allegedly tried to hook up with ahead of the slaying of a Beason family in 2009.
William Frank, a state forensic scientist, testified about DNA test results on blood samples collected after the five members of the Rick and Ruth Gee family were found beaten to death Sept. 21, 2009, in their home.
Forensic tests on blood stains produced DNA profiles matching Rick Gee inside Chris Harris’ truck, Ruth Gee on a laptop computer stolen from the victim’s home and Dillen Constant on one of Harris’ shoes.
Inconclusive results were returned on stains taken from the tire iron police believe Harris used to kill the family, and another of Harris’ shoes, said Frank.
Prosecutors contend the 34-year-old Armington man went to the Gee house to see Justina Constant, 16, after a night of trying unsuccessfully to hook up with other women.
Kristy Moore of Clinton said she and Harris had an “off-and-on” relationship for about two years that had ended “because he kept leaving me for Nicole Gee,” his ex-wife who is a surviving daughter of Rick Gee. On Sept. 20, 2009, Chris Harris called her after 11 p.m. and asked if he could come to her home, a request she denied because she had a headache, she said.
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About 12 hours later, the two connected when Moore picked up Harris at a Clinton gas station. That was where he had parked the primer gray pickup truck police said he was driving when he went to the Gee home the night before.
Moore testified she and Harris had sex and she noticed a small blister on the palm of his hand, a wound so fresh she offered a bandage for it.
When asked about the blister, Harris “said he was either chopping wood or cutting brush for a neighbor to his dad in Lawndale,” said Moore.
Lori Kuehl of Lawndale recalled a man she later identified as Chris Harris coming to her door at 11:35 p.m. on Sept. 20 and stating “I came over here to party” when she opened the door. He left five minutes later after he was not invited in, said Kuehl, who had met Harris briefly at a bar.
Laura Haggerman of McLean didn’t see Chris Harris the night he and his brother and co-defendant, Jason Harris, were engaged in what the two called “country cruisin’,” but she testified she noticed a number she associated with him on her cellphone that night. The two had dated for about two months and Harris told police he went by her house but did not stop because he saw an unfamiliar vehicle outside her home.