Jason “Blu” Griffith said he was a liar who would swear on his sons that he was telling the truth if it meant he could get what he wants Friday during his third day of testimony in his murder trial.
In an explosive end to an hourslong cross examination by chief Deputy District Attorney Marc DiGiacomo, Griffith was caught misrepresenting to the jury two days ago that the woman he’s accused of killing, “Fantasy” dancer Debbie Flores Narvaez, left a life-threatening note on his car during their volatile on-again, off-again relationship.
Instead, DiGiacomo used text messages that were found synced from Griffith’s iPhone to his computer to show that Griffith knew in spring 2010 that the letter was actually written by his roommate at the time, Louis Colombo.
The note, which was shown to the jury Wednesday, said, “I will kill you before I let another bitch have you. I will find you where ever you hide. Love always, your Destiny.”
Griffith said Wednesday he found the note on his car after leaving his job as a dancer at the Cirque du Soleil show “Love” at The Mirage. He had testified at the time that he believed Flores Narvaez wrote the note, though he wasn’t a handwriting expert.
On Friday, DiGiacomo read Griffith one of two text messages from 2010 showing Colombo admitting he wrote the note.
“Are you still mad at me? Like I said I didn’t mean to make you upset. I thought we’d be able to laugh about it. I didn’t think for a second that you’d think it was really her. The letter was so outrageous (and) in my handwriting. I’m really sorry it caused you grief,” the text message from Colombo stated.
DiGiacomo then read Griffith’s text message response to Colombo. “It wasn’t a funny joke at all. She had just said something like that on the phone,” Griffith’s text message said.
Responding to DiGiacomo’s questions, Griffith said just because Colombo wrote those text messages, he didn’t necessarily believe Colombo wrote the note.
“How do I know he wrote this or didn’t write this. He jokes about so many things,” Griffith testified.
“I took that note very seriously. ... I believe that she wrote it. As I said in the text message. She just said something like that on the phone. I have no reason to fabricate that at the time. She had just said something like that on the phone,” Griffith told the jury.
DiGiacomo pounded Griffith with questions.
“You have no reason to fabricate to your friends? To your other girls? Statements about Debbie being crazy and not actually being truthful about the fact that you’re a coward as it relates to her, that you’re a liar as it relates to her, and all of those other things you said to her? She absolutely has to be telling the truth,” the prosecutor said.
“She’s telling the truth about ... ?” Griffith asked.
“You are a coward, correct,” DiGiacomo said.
Defense lawyer Abel Yanez objected and Judge Kathleen Delaney sustained the objection.
“Let me rephrase. You are a liar, correct,” DiGiacomo asked.
“Yes sir,” Griffith said.
“And when you want something you are more than willing to lie about it,” DiGiacomo said.
“Yes sir,” Griffith said.
“You’re more than willing to say ‘on my sons this is true?’ ” DiGiacomo asked.
“If necessary, yes I have done that,” Griffith said.
“Does this oath mean anything to you, sir,” DiGiacomo asked.
Yanez objected again, but this time Delaney overruled the objection.
But before Griffith could answer, DiGiacomo told the judge that it was a good time to break for the weekend.
Griffith will take the stand again Monday for his fourth day of testimony when DiGiacomo will continue his cross examination.
The sequence could be a devastating blow to Griffith’s position that he killed Flores Narvaez in self-defense on Dec. 12, 2010. Clark County jurors are instructed before a deliberation that if they don’t believe a portion of a witness’ testimony they can disregard the entire testimony.
Griffith testified on Thursday that he killed Flores Narvaez using his forearms wrapped around her throat as he prevented her from reaching for her purse, where he said he believed she had a gun. There has been no evidence, including Griffith’s testimony, showing she ever owned a gun. Griffith testified he found no gun or knife in the purse.
His version of how he killed Flores Narvaez contradicts Colombo’s testimony earlier this week. Fearing Flores Narvaez was about to call authorities after he grabbed her by the base of her throat, Griffith approached her from behind and choked her to death, Colombo testified.
In the days following Flores Narvaez’s death, Griffith and Colombo worked together to hide the body. Eventually they dismembered it and hid it in cement- filled plastic tubs in an empty downtown home. Colombo cooperated with police in a bid for leniency in the case.
Earlier testimony showed Griffith admitted he was a philanderer, who was having intimate affairs with numerous women at the same time.
Griffith said he would lie to each of them, including Flores Narvaez, that he was being monogamous with them.
The trial is expected to continue at least until Tuesday, if not longer.
Griffith said he acted in self-defense the night Flores Narvaez was killed.
Griffith had earlier tearfully testified that Flores Narvaez threatened and harassed him during their on-again, off-again sexual relationship in 2010. She chased him in cars, called and text messaged him hundreds of times daily, yelled and screamed at him, slashed his tires, egged his car and broke his bedroom window. She also pushed and poked him during arguments. The jury has heard 14 911 calls Griffith made to police regarding domestic disturbances with Flores Narvaez.
Prosecutors have said Griffith’s actions were done in self-preservation. He feared a second domestic violence arrest over a fight with Flores Narvaez could hurt his career as a dancer and end his relationship with another woman, Agnes Roux, prosecutors said.
Griffith and Flores Narvaez had a volatile relationship which once resulted in his arrest on a battery charge. That case was dropped. Flores Narvaez was once officially “trespassed” from his home by police, though authorities had to repeatedly separate the two during their tumultuous on-again, off-again relationship.
Contact Francis McCabe at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-380-1039. Follow @fjmccabe on Twitter.