EUGENE, Ore. — The brother of the Eugene man charged with killing his father and his father’s partner took the stand for the defense Thursday.
James Gillette was the big witness as the defense for Johan Gillette began its case Thursday.
Johan’s Gillette’s brother James testified on his father’s explosive and violent behavior. He recalled a number of occasions where his father, James Gillette, lost self-control and became aggressive toward the brothers.
Johan Gillette is charged with murdering his father James Gillette and his father’s partner, former UO School of Music Dean Anne McLucas.
The prosecution claims Johan beat James and Anne with a wrench, then used bleach to cover up those crimes, but Johan is claiming self-defense.
Johan’s brother James testified from his earliest memories he knew his dad to be an aggressive, violent and explosive person. And he said the Gillette family had the same opinions of the boys’ dad. But he said Johan was known to be peaceful and non-violent.
Johan’s brother James testified his dad was athletic and often forced the boys to box each other, often ending in injury. He said his dad often carried a gun and had numerous guns around his house. James said his dad was unpredictable.
“I remember, you know, a lot of yelling and pounding on the table incidents. And I remember an incident where my dad’s girlfriend at the time kind of fled from the room, and he wound up throwing a spoon that stuck through the drywall next the frame of the door, handle first, all the way into the drywall,” said James Gillette, Johan Gillette’s brother.
Lane County Commissioner Pete Sorenson also took the stand Thursday afternoon. He testified on a number of instances where the father, James Gillette, became aggressive and violent in commissioner meetings. Commissioner Sorenson said when they knew father James Gillette was coming to be at the meetings, they’d alert security.
A number of the witnesses who testified for the defense Thursday morning were friends of Johan, claiming Johan is a non-violent peaceful man.