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HOME > American Idol > American Idol 3

Alleged Jennifer Hudson family members murderer pleads not guilty

By Christopher Rocchio, 01/21/2009 

William Balfour has pleaded not guilty to charges that he murdered three members of former American Idol finalist Jennifer Hudson's family.

The 27-year-old Balfour entered his not guilty plea on Tuesday at Chicago's Cook County Criminal Court, MSNBC reported.

Balfour -- the estranged husband of Hudson's sister Julia Hudson -- was indicted last month for the October shootings of Hudson's 57-year-old mother Darnell Donerson; her 29-year-old brother Jason; and her 7-year-old nephew Julian King.

While Balfour is currently being held without bond at an Illinois state prison, his attorney Joshua Kutnick told MSNBC he plans to request his client be moved to Cook County Jail so it is easier for consultation. 

Balfour's next court appearance is currently scheduled for January 27.

Hudson's mother and brother were found shot dead at a South Side home late last October.  Her nephew's body was subsequently found in an SUV, and a medical examiner ruled the boy's death a homicide.

Hudson was recently announced as a performer at the 51st Annual Grammy Awards on February 8.  Her self-titled debut album, which was released in September, was also nominated for Best R&B Album while "Spotlight" -- one of the album's singles -- received a nod for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.

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