Local News

Broyhill's lies went beyond cancer tale, detective testifies

Posted March 12, 2015
Updated March 13, 2015

— Prosecutors have said that Jonathan Broyhill admitted to lying to his best friends Nation and Jamie Hahn about having pancreatic cancer, but the lead detective investigating Jamie Hahn's stabbing death found evidence of further dishonesty – including Nation Hahn's credit card number being used to book a one-way trip to Las Vegas.

Broyhill is on trial for first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder and assault with a deadly weapon in connection with the April 22, 2013, attacks on the politically active couple at their north Raleigh home.

Jamie Hahn, who died two days later, ran her own fundraising firm from the home, and Broyhill had worked for her for several years. During that time, authorities say, he admitted to embezzling more than $45,000 from the campaign of a client – former U.S. Congressman Brad Miller.

The prosecution contends the feigned illnesses – including multiple sclerosis and gall bladder problems – were Broyhill's way of keep Jamie Hahn from pressing him to help her as she worked to close Miller's fundraising account after he decided not to seek re-election.

Raleigh police detective Zeke Morse said Thursday that Broyhill not only lied about his health but also about being fired from a job he never had.

Bank records also showed purchases to several restaurants and grocery stores – all of them local – that contradicted a story Broyhill told to Nation Hahn about needing to escape to the beach to cope with the job loss and medical issues.

The sudden trip happened April 11, Nation Hahn testified this week, the same day Broyhill made plans to meet with Jamie Hahn to work on an important federal campaign finance report that had been due. Broyhill disappeared without a word, forcing the couple to delay their own beach trip celebrating their fourth wedding anniversary.

Three days later, Broyhill finally met with Jamie Hahn after, Morse said, he bought an 8-inch-bladed Oneida knife at a Harris Teeter 2 miles from the Hahns' home. Morse said he found the knife's packaging in Broyhill's backpack left in the Hahns' living room after the stabbings.

The Internet browsing history on Broyhill's iPad also showed searches about pancreatic cancer and oncologists who treat the disease, cruises not requiring passports and Orbitz booking information for a one-way trip from Charlotte to Las Vegas on April 23, 2013.

Nation Hahn's credit card number was found in the Notes app of Broyhill's iPhone, Morse said. The flight, he added, was canceled April 22, 2013, less than two hours before the stabbings.

Defense attorneys say Broyhill's own actions – after attacking the Hahns, he slit his wrists and stabbed himself in the stomach – show his true motive: suicide. They say he never intended to stab Jamie Hahn but maintain "something snapped" that caused him to attack the couple.

Morse, who is back on the stand Friday as the state's 15th witness, is expected to be the prosecution's last witness.

Defense attorneys could begin presenting their case on Monday.


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