Calmly and without emotion, Eddie Ray Williams told a Collin County jury how he and Raul Cortez gunned down a McKinney woman during a botched robbery, then killed the three young men who walked in on the crime.
Wearing handcuffs and leg shackles, Williams on Tuesday denied making a deal with prosecutors in exchange for his testimony against Cortez, who is charged with five counts of capital murder in the death penalty case.
"I'm standing up like a man and taking responsibility for my actions," testified Williams, who is also charged but not yet tried for the March 12, 2004, killing of Rosa Barbosa, 46, her nephew Mark Barbosa, 25, and his friends Matthew Self, 17, and Austin York, 18.
Williams, 26, told the jury that Javier Cortez, Raul's brother, came up with the plan to rob Rosa Barbosa, who worked at a McKinney check-cashing business. Javier had been watching her and thought she took money home to "cash checks for Mexicans who don't have green cards," Williams testified.
He told the jury that he agreed to participate in the robbery but that his accomplices "didn't say anything about killing her."
Williams testified that on the night of the crime, he knocked on Rosa Barbosa's door and asked her if she'd seen his lost puppy. "Raul and Javier ran around me and pushed the woman to the ground," he told the jury.
The Cortez brothers couldn't find any money in the home, so they forced the bound woman to give them the key and alarm code to the check-cashing business.
"Then Raul disappeared and I heard a pop," Williams testified, describing how Rosa Barbosa was killed.
About that time, the other three victims walked into the home. "When they came in, Raul just opened fire," Williams testified.
The barrage of bullets didn't kill the youths, and one of the young men tried to run out the door but was caught by Raul Cortez, Williams testified.
All three young men were herded into Mark Barbosa's bedroom. "Raul gave me the .25 and told me to shoot them," Williams testified. "I shot Mark once and the other one twice."
He told the jury that Raul Cortez killed the fourth victim.
"I ran out and heard three or four shots," Williams testified. "Then Raul came out and jumped in the back of the truck."
The trio drove Self's truck to the check-cashing business, Williams told the jury. He testified that Javier Cortez went inside but returned to the truck empty-handed after the burglar alarm sounded.
Williams testified that Raul Cortez later drove his brother's car toward Dallas, while he and Javier followed in Self's truck, which was ditched at a Dallas apartment complex.
Raul Cortez "began breaking the guns down and throwing them out the window" as the men drove along a highway, Williams told the jury.
Before he was dropped off at his Allen home, Javier Cortez "said to take this to our graves," Williams testified. "He wanted us to die with this on our conscience."
Williams testified that after the killings, he kept his secret until 2007 when his father died. "I felt I had to get something off my chest," so he told his girlfriend, he said. She contacted McKinney police.
Raul Cortez and Williams were each charged with a fifth count of capital murder under a law that allows the extra charge when more than one murder occurs in the same incident.
Testimony in the trial continues today before visiting state District Judge Webb Biard.