New Orleans—The most powerful testimony of the day came from Betty Jefferson. She sat in the witness box distraught, saying she had recently found out her daughter Angela Coleman is fighting an illness and said she still did not know what the illness was.
This is the second time Jefferson testifies against Renee Gill Pratt. Today she said "I hope to tell the truth." "At one point it was uncontrollable." "I'd just like to move on with my life."
Betty Jefferson and her daughter Angela Coleman have already plead guilty and are awaiting sentencing.
Jefferson said for some time the charities existed but eventually stopped saying "through checks that we wrote the money was there." "But the students were not." "It existed on paper." "It didn't function because it didn't have the students it needed to function."
Jefferson said having Gill Pratt in the House was essential and that it was "always important to have people in the position you have contact with to get your program."
Also testifying was John Lee who sold the 'I Can Learn' software. Gill Pratt appropriated $300,000 in state funding for the software to be installed in two schools. Mose Jefferson received $30,000 from the deal.
Under cross examination Lee was asked "from your knowledge she (Gill Pratt) had no awareness you ultimately paid $30,000 to Mose?" Lee replied, "No."
Connie Nelson who worked with the Louisiana Urban Affairs division testified Gill Pratt sought grant funding for charities operated by the Jefferson family, but said their are "No restrictions" when it comes to seeking funding for a charity operated by friends or family.
Trial resumes tomorrow at 8:30am with the defense cross examining Betty Jefferson.