NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — On Wednesday, the jury in the Short Hills Mall carjacking trial heard the alleged getaway driver describe what happened in his own words — including how the gang set out to steal a specific type of car.
As CBS2’s Meg Baker reported, Basim Henry sat in court holding a transcript of his own words — a confession given days after the murder of Dustin Friedland, a young Hoboken attorney who was shot in the head in front of his wife in the Short Hills Mall parking garage in December 2013.
The video was played for jurors.
“He wanted a Range Rover, not sure if he had a sale for it,” he said.
Three other men — Kevin Roberts, Karif Ford, and Hanif Thompson — were also charged with murder.
Henry — the alleged getaway driver, seen in surveillance video — said they were out shopping for a car to steal, and knew Thompson had a weapon.
“I saw the gun before Short Hills, in his coat pocket,” he said.
The 36-year-old said he dropped Hanif and Kevin off near Friedland’s Range Rover.
“I saw a man, a lady, tusslin’ with em,” he said. “I heard a shot, I want to say two.”
Video from the mall shows the suburban driven by Henry leave the garage followed by the Range Rover. Friedland was left for dead with his wife by his side.
“This wasn’t supposed to happen,” he said.
The Range Rover was recovered in Newark the next day behind an abandoned house.
Henry was arrested days after the carjacking in a hotel room in Easton, Pennsylvania where he was hiding out.
Authorities said security cameras at the mall place Henry in the parking garage days earlier following a white Range Rover — EZ Pass and highway cameras show the men following the vehicle home.
On Thursday, a woman who said she was followed by the defendants will take the witness stand. The prosecution is then expected to rest its case. At that point Henry will have to decide whether to testify in his own defense.