VILLE PLATE – Accused murderer Ordesto Toussaint stood up during the third day of his trial Thursday, called a witness a liar and fired his attorney.
During the testimony of Louisiana State Police Detective Wayne Vidrine, who was answering questions regarding Toussaint’s confession to the murder of Elizabeth Fontenot, 18, Toussaint said the statements from his confession were lies and he was told to say them.
Toussaint’s outburst continued with him telling 13th Judicial District Judge John Larry Vidrine that he wanted to fire his court-appointed attorney, Alex “Sonny” Chapman, and hire his own attorney. Toussaint finally asked to leave the courtroom and was escorted out.
Vidrine quickly dismissed the jury when Toussaint’s outburst began and called them back into the courtroom once he was escorted outside. Without Toussaint present in the courtroom, Vidrine reappointed Chapman and the questioning of Detective Vidrine continued.
Vidrine testified that Toussaint confessed to the murder of Fontenot, to taking her car and to burning the vehicle. Fontenot died due to blunt trauma to the head.
The prosecution rested shortly before lunch and the defense called its first witness, District Attorney Trent Brignac. Chapman questioned Brignac about conversations he had with Toussaint prior to his confession of the crime.
Chapman had argued during the trial that pressure was put on Toussaint to confess because threats were made against his family. Brignac stated he did not threaten Toussaint or his family. He said he only spoke to the defendant, much like he does with many other defendants.
Toussaint returned to the trial asked to have Brignac called to the stand again, but Judge Vidrine denied the request. With no other witnesses to call, the defense rested. Closing arguments in the case will be held tomorrow morning, Friday, April 8.