Frances Hall takes the stand in murder trial

Frances Hall takes the stand in murder trial

SAN ANTONIO -- The woman who killed her husband with a Cadillac told jurors Monday afternoon why she should be spared a life sentence.

Defense attorneys of Frances Hall are trying to prove to jurors the 53-year-old acted out of "sudden passion," meaning the alleged road rage chase happened because emotions rang high.

If the jury believes that was the case, instead of life in prison for murder, Hall's time behind bars could be only two to 20 years plus probation.

At least six of Hall's family members took the stand, telling jurors she would never intend to kill her husband, multimillionaire Bill Hall Jr.

Frances Hall's sister, Connie Bidalez, found Bill Hall the night of the deadly crash. He was ejected from his Harley Davidson and thrown into a grassy area along a rural stretch of 1604 near Macdona-Lacoste.

Prosecutors said Frances Hall hit him with her Escalade during the chase. When Bidalez found her brother-in-law, she said he used his last breath to defend his wife.

"He loved his wife. He did, he didn't want anybody to hurt her or hurt his family," said Bidalez. "When we were talking [at the crash scene], that's what he had told me that it was an accident. He couldn't breathe."

Also in the mix was Bill Hall's mistress, Bonnie Contreras, driving a Range Rover in front of the couple. Frances and Bill's daughter, Nikki, said her father's affair was one thing but the way his mistress treated Frances was a different story.

"She taunted her. She sent her pictures. She threatened to tell me and my brother of the things her and my dad did," said Nikki. "My mom is the most loving, caring individual you'll ever meet."

Nikki spoke of her parents' love for each other. She said her mother would never intentionally harm the man she has loved since she was 18.

Thursday evening, after nearly eight hours of deliberations, jurors found Frances Hall guilty of murder and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

The defense is hoping to prove sudden passion, hoping testimonies from Bill Hall's siblings will help convince jurors the deadly crash was an accident.

"Just soften your hearts," Barbara Lynn Hall, Bill's sister, told the jury. "She's not evil. She's not. She's a good person, we're all close."

The biggest testimony of the day came from killer herself, Frances Hall.

Hall told the court Bonnie Contreras would send texts of her and Bill having sex, and would call the couple's cell phones nonstop. She said her and Bill were trying to work out their marriage, but she kicked him out twice before the deadly accident due to heartbreak.

"I could not believe the man I had known for 34 years, I didn't actually know him," said Hall. "For him to be living this kind of life. So I did. I told him to get his stuff and leave."

This wasn't the first time her husband cheated, said Hall. She first found out he was fooling around years ago when he admitted to fathering a child with his cousin's wife.

Jurors also learned why the trio was rushing down the highway the evening of October 10, 2013. Hall said her husband and his mistress followed her on the way home from her goddaughter's volleyball game. She said when she tried telling Contreras to pull over, the mistress shook her finger and started to brake sporadically.

"I wanted to confront this woman. I wanted to tell her, 'Leave me alone'," said Hall. "If Bill wants to be with you, fine. Leave me out of it."

As they sped down the highway, Hall said Bill pulled back and appeared to be saying something to her.

"I'm seeing him, I'm seeing him, and then I didn't see him anymore. As soon as I took my eye off of him, [Bonnie] braked. I mean, she braked so hard that I thought I was going to flip over or something," said Hall. "I just breaked and my car went from side to side and it kind of jumped. Everything flew to the front. Everything."

Court let out around 4:30 Monday afternoon. Closing arguments begin Tuesday morning.

(© 2016 KENS)


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