Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (2024)

Table of Contents
Prosecutors expect to rest their case by mid-morning tomorrow Trial is wrapped for the day, two more witnesses tomorrow Ed Banner testifies about finding Hunter Biden's gun in trash can Prosecution calls man who found Hunter Biden's gun in the trash Delaware police officer say a local man found Hunter Biden's gun while rummaging through trash Former Delaware State Police lieutenant takes the stand Police officer questioned about investigating gun incident Police officer takes the stand to testify about gun Defense lawyer appears frustrated with Hallie Biden's memory Defense dove into the tumultuous relationship between Hunter Biden and Hallie Biden Defense builds out the timeline of the morning Hallie Biden threw out the gun Defense and prosecutors spar over phone records Court sketches show Hallie Biden on the stand Here's who may testify after Hallie Biden Many family members join Hunter Biden in court Hallie Biden got married last weekend, her new husband confirms Cross-examination of Hallie Biden feels strained at times Hallie Biden appears to have trouble remembering specifics around finding gun Hallie Biden says Hunter Biden would often lie to her Hallie Biden says she didn't see Hunter Biden using drugs during the time period he bought the gun The prosecution's direct examination of Hallie Biden is over Hallie Biden says she found drug paraphernalia near her son Hallie Biden says Hunter Biden was 'angry' with her after he found out she disposed of gun Hallie Biden testifies about two messages important to prosecution's case Hunter Biden has been listening carefully to testimony Hallie Biden asks Hunter, 'Where are you, truthfully' Hallie Biden said Hunter Biden told her to file a police report after she couldn't retrieve the gun Prosecutor shows jury video of Hallie Biden throwing away Hunter Biden's gun Hallie Biden says she was 'afraid' of Hunter Biden's gun and threw it away to prevent her kids from finding it Hallie Biden testifies about finding Hunter Biden's gun in his car Hallie Biden blames Hunter Biden for introducing her to drugs, says it was a 'terrible' time for her Hallie Biden says Hunter Biden was sometimes in denial about his addiction Hallie Biden says she had to google crack because she didn't know what it was Hallie Biden testifies about Hunter Biden's drug use Gun seller says no indication Hunter Biden was on drugs when he bought the gun What to know about Hallie Biden Hunter Biden's lawyer focuses on lack of instructions to drug question on ATF form Defense lawyer zeroing in on wording of drug question on ATF form Prosecutor reveals they don't have access to all of Hunter Biden's laptop hard drive Court is in session Judge Noreika appears to be frustrated with Hunter Biden's lawyer over exhibit management Prosecutors object to text messages Hunter Biden's lawyer wants to show Defense lawyer raises several issues at start of court Jill Biden not in court day due to presidential travel Hallie Biden arrives at the courthouse Here are the prosecution's remaining witnesses Hunter Biden arrives in court House GOP sends DOJ criminal referral on Hunter and James Biden over impeachment inquiry testimony Where is President Biden today? Here's what to expect at trial today Takeaways from Day 3 of Hunter Biden’s firearms trial

Prosecutors expect to rest their case by mid-morning tomorrow

Owen Hayes

Zoë Richards

Owen Hayes and Zoë Richards

After the jury was dismissed for the day, the government said it expects to rest by mid-morning tomorrow after bringing two additional witnesses: forensic chemist Dr. Jason Brewer and DEA Supervisory Special Agent Joshua Romig.

Hunter Biden's defense team said that after prosecution rests its case, the defense lawyers will decide whether to call their own chemist as an expert. If they do, they would use a longer break after the government rests to get that witness certified as an expert.

The chemist would be among the two to three witnesses the defense team expects to call to the witness stand before making a decision about the defendant’s own testimony.

Lowell said he expects the proceedings can be wrapped up by Monday.

Trial is wrapped for the day, two more witnesses tomorrow

Daniel Barnesis reporting from the federal courthouse.

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Day 4 of Hunter Biden’s trial wrapped at 4:35 p.m. The final witness of the day was Ed Banner, the man who found Hunter Biden's gun in the trash can outside the grocery store where Hallie Biden disposed of it. We are expecting the government to rest tomorrow after calling two more witnesses.

Ed Banner testifies about finding Hunter Biden's gun in trash can

Daniel Barnesis reporting from the federal courthouse.

Zoë Richards

Daniel Barnes and Zoë Richards

Ed Banner, the 80-year-old Navy veteran who testified he found Hunter Biden's gun in the trash after Hallie Biden tossed it, said he started digging for cans and bottles in trash cans as a hobby before he retired in 2006, adding that he would take the recyclables to New York to cash in.

Prosecutor Derek Hines asked Banner to review surveillance footage from the grocery store that showed him finding the gun in the trash can.

“That sure looks like me,” Banner said.

Banner testified that after finding the gun, he put it in a lunch box and brought it home where he didn’t look at it or touch it again until Millard Greer, a former Delaware State Police lieutenant, came to collect it.

Banner also testified that no one in his house uses cocaine — which is relevant due to cocaine residue that was found on Hunter Biden’s leather pouch where Hallie Biden had put the gun and ammo.

During cross-examination, Lowell asked Banner about how he transported the gun after he took it out of the trash can. Banner said he put the leather pouch in the General Motors lunch box and then “I might have put it in the bag with the cans.”

Prosecution calls man who found Hunter Biden's gun in the trash

Gary Grumbach

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

The prosecution has called to the stand Edward Banner, the man who found Hunter Biden's gun in the trash after Hallie Biden tossed it.

Delaware police officer say a local man found Hunter Biden's gun while rummaging through trash

Daniel Barnesis reporting from the federal courthouse.

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Greer, now a special investigator with the Delaware Department of Justice, testified about being assigned to investigate Hunter Biden’s “theft of a firearm” case in 2018. Greer went to the store, spoke with the manager and reviewed security footage, he said.

He said he obtained the gun through an elderly man who had a habit of rummaging through the trash looking for recyclables. He had found the gun and took Greer to his house to collect the weapon and leather pouch, which contained chapstick, the speed loader and box of ammo. There were 23 bullets in the box (which comes with 25), Greer said.

After collecting the gun, Greer took Biden’s gun back to the police station and logged it into evidence, where it remained until it was eventually transferred to federal custody.

After recovering the gun, Greer called Biden and asked him if he wanted to press charges for the theft of his firearm. Biden declined.

Former Delaware State Police lieutenant takes the stand

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (2)

Gary Grumbach

Zoë Richards

Gary Grumbach and Zoë Richards

Millard Greer, a former Delaware State Police lieutenant, took the stand at 3:25 p.m.

Greer is expected to offer testimony about recovering Hunter Biden's gun, as well as ammunition, a speed loader and a brown leather pouch from a man who found them in a trash receptacle at Janssen’s Market.

Police officer questioned about investigating gun incident

Owen Hayes

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Marley, the police officer, had the briefest of direct examinations by prosecutor Derek Hines — it took less than two minutes. Hines asked Marley about his experience in the force and his call to Janssen’s Market on Oct. 23.

Marley, who was in uniform as he testified, said he viewed security camera video, and was present for an interview with Hunter Biden but did not conduct the interview himself. Hunter Biden was voluntarily interviewed, as the victim in this case. “He was the victim the entire time,” Marley said of this incident, because he reported a “gun was removed from his vehicle.”

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (4)

Marley then walked through the report that was prepared by his colleague. Marley discussed driving to StarQuest Shooters to get the firearm’s serial number, because Hunter did not have that number at top of mind.

In cross-examination by Abbe Lowell, the defense attorney attempted to show that Marley didn’t really know too much about this situation. “I don’t think I ever even saw Ms. Biden,” Marley said after being asked. He also said he never went into the back office, where Hallie Biden was sitting the entire time with a store employee.

Police officer takes the stand to testify about gun

Gary Grumbach

Hallie Biden has finished her testimony. Next on the stand is Delaware State Police Senior Cpl. Joshua Marley. He is expected to testify about his response to an incident at Janssen’s Market, what Hunter Biden had admitted, and about evidence recovered. Hallie Biden threw out the handgun behind the grocery store, and it was later recovered by someone else.

Defense lawyer appears frustrated with Hallie Biden's memory

Owen Hayes

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

At one point, defense lawyer Abbe Lowell appeared to get frustrated with Hallie Biden’s memory and frequent answer of “I don’t recall.”

For example, when Lowell asked her if she remembered seeing him do drugs between Oct. 6 and 12, she answered, “I don’t know.”

“So there are just some things you remember and then many things you don’t,” Lowell said.

Defense dove into the tumultuous relationship between Hunter Biden and Hallie Biden

Daniel Barnesis reporting from the federal courthouse.

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Following the gun incident their relationship was “more tense,” Hallie Biden said.

Lowell returned to a message that had been previously entered into evidence, underscoring that tension.

“The f---ing FBI Hallie. It’s hard to believe anyone is that stupid // so what’s my fault here Hallie that you speak of. Owning a gun that’s in a locked car hidden on another property? You say I invade your privacy. What more can I do than come back to you to try again. And you do this???? Who in their right mind would trust you would help me get sober?,” he wrote.

When Hunter Biden says “help me get sober” you have no way of knowing if he was referring to drugs or alcohol, Lowell asked. Correct, she responded.

Fast forwarding a few days, Lowell introduced a text from Hallie Biden that she sent to Hunter Biden on Oct. 27.

“Don’t come back to the house, obviously you have something in New York more important to you than me,” she wrote, in an apparent reference to Zoe Kestan.

Defense builds out the timeline of the morning Hallie Biden threw out the gun

Owen Hayes

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Lowell continued building out the timeline for the morning that Hallie Biden threw away the gun. Lowell produced a phone log of calls between Hallie and Hunter Biden and began to piece together a timeline based on those logs and text messages the pair sent each other.

She said that eventually two cops came to the grocery store office to question her.

“Police coming to talk to me now. I’ll take full blame. I don’t want to live like this anymore. This is too much for me to handle,” she texted him at the time.

Defense and prosecutors spar over phone records

Owen Hayes

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

After running into roadblocks with the texts he was trying to use to jog Hallie Biden’s memory, Lowell has now turned to a series of phone calls based on phone records to reconstruct the events of the morning of Oct. 23, when Hallie found the gun in Hunter Biden’s car and then disposed of it in the Janssen’s Market trash can.

Prior to this, when returning to the courtroom from their lunch break, Lowell could be heard telling the prosecution: “It’s your phone records. And you know where it’s from.”

They had a four-minute sidebar at the judge’s bench when Judge Noreika returned to the courtroom before she called the jury back in.

After the sidebar finished, Noreika commented: “Lots of sidebars. We spend a lot of time over there,” referencing the corner by the bench. Hunter Biden once again stayed at the defense table during this sidebar, standing up and stretching his back.

Court sketches show Hallie Biden on the stand

NBC News

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (6)
Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (7)

The court released some sketches drawn by courtroom artist Bill Hennessy. The first one shows an image of the gun at the heart of the trial. The second shows Hallie Biden on the stand being questioned by prosecutor Leo Wise.

Here's who may testify after Hallie Biden

Gary Grumbach

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Hallie Biden is back on the stand after the lunch break. Here’s who we think is still left to testify for the government after she's done.

Delaware State Police Senior Cpl. Joshua Marley:He is expected to testify about his response to an incident at Janssen’s Market, what Hunter Biden had admitted, and about evidence recovered. Hallie Biden threw the handgun out behind the grocery store, which was later recovered by someone else.

Former Delaware State Police Lt. Millard Greer:He is expected to testify about his recovery of the gun Hunter Biden purchased, as well as ammunition, speed loader and a brown leather pouch from the man who found them in the trash receptacle at Janssen’s Market.

Forensic chemist Dr. Jason Brewer:He is expected to testify about his analysis of the residue on the brown leather pouch Hunter Biden had used, and his opinion that the residue was cocaine based on his testing and examination of that evidence.

Drug Enforcement Administration Supervisory Agent Joshua Romig:He is expected to offer opinions, based on his training and experience, about coded messages sent by Hunter Biden and about other information disclosed to the defendant in the government’s expert disclosure.

Many family members join Hunter Biden in court

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (9)

Sarah Fitzpatrick

Monica Alba

Sarah Fitzpatrick and Monica Alba

There is a steady stream of Hunter Biden supporters in attendance in court today. Valerie Bidens Owen — Joe Biden’s sister and former campaign manager is sitting in the front row behind the defense table, next to Hunter’s wife, Melissa Cohen-Biden. Her son Cuffe Owens (Joe Biden’s nephew and Hunter's cousin) is also in court.

The president and the first lady are traveling but a source familiar tells NBC News that "POTUS and FLOTUS have been asking for updates on trial and it’s definitely top of mind, even with their many commitments and engagements."

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (11)

Hallie Biden got married last weekend, her new husband confirms

Sarah Fitzpatrick

During Hallie Biden's testimony, NBC News spoke with her new husband, John Hopkins Anning, who confirmed that they got married last weekend.

“It's not a great way to start to the honeymoon” he said jokingly, adding that they haven’t yet found the time to go on a honeymoon.

He told NBC News that testifying today is “very hard on her” emotionally, and that he was proud of her.

During a break in testimony for a sidebar between the judge and lawyers, Hallie waved and smiled at Anning, and they appeared to mouth “I love you” to each other. He held her purse for her during the testimony and sat next to her lawyer.

Cross-examination of Hallie Biden feels strained at times

Mike Memoli

Abbe Lowell’s cross-examination of Hallie Biden has felt tortured at times, as he appears to be going through a long process to try and introduce text messages into evidence that otherwise have not been allowed.

She appears nervous and uncomfortable on the stand, at times looking to the judge or to the gallery to indicate she’s not sure what the correct way to address a question is. Lowell acknowledged the difficult nature of trying to recall specific moments from nearly four years ago. “Reconstructing this is not easy,” he observed. “Yes,” she said.

When Lowell tried to walk her through a process of looking down at printed text messages and asking if it refreshed her memory, he at one point to her nervous response said: “So far, so good.” The prosecutor quickly jumped in to say, no it’s not. There was a genuine eruption of laughter from the entire room that led to a sidebar between the lawyers.

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (13)

Hallie Biden appears to have trouble remembering specifics around finding gun

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (14)
Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (15)

Gary Grumbach

Rebecca Shabadis in Washington, D.C.

Gary Grumbach and Rebecca Shabad

Hunter Biden's lawyer Abbe Lowell asked Hallie Biden a series of questions about the day she found Hunter's gun, on Oct. 23, and threw it out behind the Wilmington grocery store.

“I don’t recall when I first saw the truck,” Hallie Biden said of Hunter Biden's truck where she found the handgun. Lowell then walked her through her morning.

She took her kids, Hunter and Natalie, to school around 8 to 8:15 a.m. When she came back after dropping her kids off, it was around 8:30 a.m.

She said she doesn’t remember whether the truck was there when she returned, but she did at one point say it’s possible Hunter Biden got into bed with her overnight.

Her memory seems to be hazy about this time period. In an effort to help her, Lowell created some timestamps: 8:30 a.m., she was back from dropping her kids, and 11:30 a.m., she dropped the gun in the trash at the grocery store.

Hallie Biden says Hunter Biden would often lie to her

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (18)

Owen Hayes

Rebecca Shabadis in Washington, D.C.

Owen Hayes and Rebecca Shabad

Hunter Biden’s lawyer Abbe Lowell seemed to suggest during his cross-examination that Hallie Biden's testimony is unreliable because Hunter Biden often lied to her about where he was or what he was doing.

She testified that Hunter Biden would often tell her things that were untrue, such as where he was.

Lowell asked about her Oct. 13 text to Hunter Biden when she asked, “Why won’t you answer my calls? Where are you? Are you with someone?,” to which he responded that he was waiting for a dealer near a 7-Eleven.

Lowell asked if she knew for sure that he was at that 7-Eleven. “I do not,” she said.

Then, Lowell asked about the texts where Hunter Biden said he was sleeping on a car smoking crack.

“You have no idea whether he was just saying that or whether he was actually there?” Lowell asked.

“Correct,” she said.

Hallie Biden says she didn't see Hunter Biden using drugs during the time period he bought the gun

Daniel Barnesis reporting from the federal courthouse.

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Lowell asked Hallie Biden about the couple's attempts at getting clean together in 2018. Lowell then narrowed his questions to Oct. 6, 2018, the day Hunter came back to Wilmington from Los Angeles. The lawyer said that Hunter Biden came back when he did because he and Hallie Biden were going to rehab treatment together at a Pennsylvania facility, Caron Rehab, about 90 minutes away from Wilmington.

Lowell then asked her if she had seen him use drugs from the time he came back to Wilmington through the day she threw away the gun. She said she had not and acknowledged that in the past she had.

The defense is making the point here that there is no eyewitness evidence of Hunter Biden using drugs in the days leading up to the gun purchase or during the time that he possessed the gun.

The prosecution's direct examination of Hallie Biden is over

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (20)
Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (21)

Gary Grumbach

Rebecca Shabadis in Washington, D.C.

Gary Grumbach and Rebecca Shabad

The prosecution's direct examination of Hallie Biden has ended; now the defense team will cross-examine her.

Hallie Biden says she found drug paraphernalia near her son

Gary Grumbach

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Before finishing his direct questioning of Hallie Biden, prosecutor Leo Wise had two text messages to introduce. One was from Hallie to Hunter Biden, that said “I just went into library and sitting next to Hunter was your brown leather pouch with a stem in it." Hunter in this case is a reference to her son's name and "stem" is a word for drug paraphernalia.

She testified that Hunter Biden had multiple brown leather pouches over this time period.

Wise also introduced a final text from Hunter Biden to Hallie Biden on Jan. 28, 2019, where he brings back up her decision to throw the gun away, suggesting her move could have caused someone to shoot their sibling’s head off.

Hallie Biden says Hunter Biden was 'angry' with her after he found out she disposed of gun

Owen Hayes

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Before the break, prosecutors asked Hallie Biden if Hunter Biden found out himself that the gun was missing or if she told him.

“I did not tell him,” Hallie said. “I was just going to pretend like it wasn’t me.”

After she texted him “call me” with several exclamation points, she said that they did, in fact, speak on the phone, and that all she could remember was that “he was angry with me.”

Hallie Biden testifies about two messages important to prosecution's case

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (25)

Owen Hayes

Rebecca Shabadis in Washington, D.C.

Owen Hayes and Rebecca Shabad

Hallie Biden testified about two of the most important messages to the government’s case, an Oct. 13 text about waiting for a “dealer named Mookie” in Wilmington, and another on Oct. 14 in which Hunter Biden wrote, “I was sleeping on a car smoking crack."

These texts are the government’s clearest pieces of evidence that Hunter Biden was using drugs in October.

What did Hallie understand that Hunter Biden was buying? Wise asked, referring to the Oct. 13 text about the dealer.

“That he was buying crack cocaine,” Hallie answered.

The day after the second text about sleeping on a car, Hallie texted him back, “I just want to help you get sober, nothing I do or you do is working. I’m sorry // I am afraid you are going to die,” according to the government’s exhibit.

“Were you afraid of him overdosing?” asked Wise.

“Maybe? Or suicide ... I didn’t know,” she answered.

Hallie Biden then came off the stand and the court took a short break, during which the opposing counsels rehashed some of the same evidentiary arguments made this morning, with no changes in the judge’s ruling.

Hunter Biden has been listening carefully to testimony

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (27)
Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (28)

Gary Grumbach

Rebecca Shabadis in Washington, D.C.

Gary Grumbach and Rebecca Shabad

Hunter Biden has been watching Hallie Biden's testimony very carefully, perching his head on his right fist.

During one of the earlier sidebars with gun store employee Gordon Cleveland, Hunter wrote a note and left it on the podium for his lawyer Abbe Lowell to read.

Hallie Biden asks Hunter, 'Where are you, truthfully'

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (31)
Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (32)

Gary Grumbach

Summer Concepcion

Gary Grumbach and Summer Concepcion

Prosecutors displayed text messages between Hallie and Hunter Biden in which he used the old number of his ex-wife, Kathleen Buhle.

“You ok? Where are you, truthfully,” Hallie Biden texted him on Oct. 13, 2018, before she found the gun.

It's notable because one of the ways the defense has attempted to preemptively undercut Hallie's testimony is by suggesting the president’s son would lie to her when he didn’t want to see her; this exchange implies Hallie Biden was aware that Hunter Biden would sometimes lie to her.

Hallie Biden said Hunter Biden told her to file a police report after she couldn't retrieve the gun

Owen Hayes and Gary Grumbach

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Hallie Biden said that after leaving the store, she went home and was uncertain as to whether Hunter Biden was there at the time she left, but she seemed to recall that he was not there when she got back.

“I remember him telling me to go back and file a police report,” she said.

She said at some point he found out she had thrown the gun away and he told her, “First, go look for it." But, she said, "when I went to go look for it, I couldn’t find it." Hunter Biden told her to file the police report because the gun was in his name.

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (37)

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Prosecutors called up security camera footage from outside Jensen’s Grocery, which shows Hallie Biden back up to the store in a black vehicle, getting out and somewhat frantically looking for the gun. She looked all over the area outside the store before getting back into her car.

“What did you do after you couldn’t find it,” prosecutor Leo Wise asked.

"Talked to them at Janssen’s,” asking if they took the trash out or had security cameras, she replied.

Hallie testified that she stayed at the grocery store while she filed a police report and was communicating with Hunter Biden throughout this time.

Prosecutor shows jury video of Hallie Biden throwing away Hunter Biden's gun

Daniel Barnesis reporting from the federal courthouse.

Owen Hayes

Daniel Barnes and Owen Hayes

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Prosecutor Leo Wise introduced the leather pouch into evidence and displayed it forthe jury. He also introduced surveillance camera video of Hallie Biden throwing away the gun at the grocery store up the street from her house.

She said she couldn’t remember exactly what she did after throwing away the bag with the gun inside. “I was just so flustered from the whole thing,” she testified. “I realize it was a stupid idea now, but I was just panicking.”

Wise then displayed a surveillance video of her entering the grocery store. In the video, she stands by the fridge closest to the store’s entrance for about a minute. She did not appear to buy anything.

Hallie Biden says she was 'afraid' of Hunter Biden's gun and threw it away to prevent her kids from finding it

Daniel Barnesis reporting from the federal courthouse.

Owen Hayes

Daniel Barnes and Owen Hayes

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Hallie Biden testified about finding Hunter Biden’s gun in his car and throwing it away in a trash can outside a grocery store.

Hallie says that when she found the gun and ammo, she “panicked” and “wanted to get rid of them.” “I didn’t want him to hurt himself or my kids to find it and hurt themselves,” she said. She said she considered hiding the gun but didn’t because she thought one of her kids might find it in the house.

"I was afraid to, kind of, touch it,” she said, as to why she placed the gun and ammo inside Hunter’s leather pouch. Initially, she had tried to put the gun in a shopping bag, but it didn’t quite fit and a part was sticking out. She then looked around the car for something else to put the gun in, found the leather pouch, put the gun and ammo in there and then placed the pouch back inside the shopping bag.

Wise introduced the pouch into evidence and displayed it forthe jury. He also introduced surveillance camera video of Hallie throwing away the gun at the grocery store up the street from her house.

Hallie said she couldn’t remember exactly what she did after throwing away the bag with the gun inside. “I was just so flustered from the whole thing,” she testified. “I realize it was a stupid idea now, but I was just panicking.”

Hallie Biden testifies about finding Hunter Biden's gun in his car

Gary Grumbach

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Prosecutors are asking Hallie Biden to walk through Oct. 23, 2018 — the day she found the gun in Hunter’s truck.

She said he arrived at her house on the morning of Oct. 23. “I didn’t know where he was and I’d been trying to reach him for weeks,” she said. “He was tired, exhausted, looked like he hadn’t slept,” she said of Hunter’s condition that morning.

Hallie says he quickly went to bed when he arrived at her house. At that point, Hallie testified, she went to clean up his car. “Hoping we could help him start anew and deal with stuff,” she said of her motive to search the car.

In the car, Hallie testified she found “trash, clothes, some remnants of crack,” and “paraphernalia.” Wise then asked if that was it. “Oh, and the gun, obviously,” Hallie said.

Hallie Biden blames Hunter Biden for introducing her to drugs, says it was a 'terrible' time for her

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (39)

Owen Hayes

Summer Concepcion

Owen Hayes and Summer Concepcion

Hallie Biden, who is testifying under a grant of immunity, detailed her experience using drugs with Hunter Biden.

Prosecutor Leo Wise asked her whether she was using drugs in the summer of 2018, after she traveled to Los Angeles to visit Hunter Biden at the Roosevelt Hotel.

“Yes, I was,” she replied.

Asked by Wise about what types of drugs, she said, “crack cocaine.”

Wise asked “Who had introduced you” to it?

“Hunter did,” she replied. “It was a terrible experience that I went through and I’m embarrassed and I’m ashamed of that period of my life.”

Hallie Biden says Hunter Biden was sometimes in denial about his addiction

Daniel Barnesis reporting from the federal courthouse.

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Hallie Biden said Hunter Biden’s demeanor would change when he smoked crack. He would become “agitated, high strung,” she said, “but other times functioning as well.”

At times, he would tell her to leave him alone and that he didn’t have a problem, she said. Other times, Hunter would admit to his addiction and tell Hallie that he would figure it out “my way.”

The amount of crack that Hunter possessed at any given time ranged from a piece smaller than a marble to multiple crack rocks the size of ping pong balls, she said.

She also testified that they would fight about his drug usage, saying that she told him, "This can’t go on, we can’t do this.”

Hallie Biden says she had to google crack because she didn't know what it was

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (41)

Daniel Barnesis reporting from the federal courthouse.

Rebecca Shabadis in Washington, D.C.

Daniel Barnes and Rebecca Shabad

Hallie Biden said she discovered some crack and had to “google it" because, she said, "I didn’t know what it was.”

When she confronted Hunter about the drugs, he admitted he was using.

Hunter would smoke crack “occasionally” in Hallie Biden's presence, she testified, saying that in between crack use, he continued to work and see family.

She also witnessed Hunter smoke crack in his D.C. apartment and in a house they rented in Annapolis, Maryland, from the fall of 2017 through July 2018. At times, Hallie Biden would accompany Hunter Biden to drug deals, she said.

Hunter Biden's demeanor would change when he smoked crack, she said. He would become “agitated, high strung,” she said, “but other times functioning as well.”

The amount of crack Hunter possessed at any given time ranged from a piece smaller than a marble to multiple rocks the size of ping pong balls, she said.

Hallie Biden testifies about Hunter Biden's drug use

Daniel Barnesis reporting from the federal courthouse.

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Hallie Biden is currently testifying about the times she witnessed Hunter Biden’s drug use.

She began her testimony by identifying Hunter Biden as her brother-in-law and saying she’s known him for a long time, since they were in middle school.

She said she didn’t know he was using crack until she discovered some in her Wilmington home while he was staying with her once their relationship began.

He would smoke crack “occasionally” in her presence, she testified, saying that he continued to work and see family in between doing drugs.

She also witnessed him smoke crack in his D.C. apartment and in a house they rented in Annapolis, Maryland, from the fall of 2017 through July 2018. At times Hallie would accompany Hunter to drug deals, she said.

Gun seller says no indication Hunter Biden was on drugs when he bought the gun

Owen Hayes

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

In wrapping up Cleveland’s cross-examination, Lowell asked him if he observed Hunter Biden exhibit any signs of drug or alcohol use while he was in the store, a practice of Cleveland’s when dealing with customers. “None at all,” Cleveland said.

What to know about Hallie Biden

Rebecca Shabadis in Washington, D.C.

Hallie Biden has taken the witness stand. She is the wife of the late Beau Biden, Hunter Biden's older brother, who died from brain cancer in 2015.

Hunter Biden began a romantic relationship with Hallie Biden and they were together at the time that Hunter Biden purchased the firearm. During opening statements, prosecutor Derek Hines said that Hunter Biden texted Hallie Biden the day after he bought the gun about meeting a drug dealer named "Mookie." And a day after that, he texted her that he was sleeping on a car smoking crack.

In his opening statements, defense lawyer Abbe Lowell pre-emptively pushed back on text messages between the couple that the prosecution plans to use as evidence. Lowell said that Hunter Biden's messages can't necessarily be taken at face value because he sometimes lied to her about his whereabouts because he didn't want to see her.

"Hallie will testify about these messages and the other drug messages sent by the defendant during the 11 days he had the gun, before she took it from his truck," Hines said. "The defendant previously introduced crack to Hallie, and she became a drug user, too, but by October 2018, she had been clean for two months and she remains clean today."

Hallie Biden is expected to testify about her crack use, which Hines acknowledged would be "embarrassing." He also said she is testifying under an immunity agreement, so she can't be prosecuted for what she says on the stand.

The prosecutor said that Hallie Biden found Hunter Biden's gun in his car, and took the gun, pouch, speed loader and ammunition in a gift bag to a grocery store in the suburbs of Wilmington and threw them out behind the store.

Hallie Biden has two children from her marriage to Beau Biden.

Hunter Biden's lawyer focuses on lack of instructions to drug question on ATF form

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (44)

Owen Hayes

Summer Concepcion

Owen Hayes and Summer Concepcion

When he moved onto the 4th and 5th pages of the ATF form, defense lawyer Abbe Lowell pointed out there are instructions defending terms in sections 11a, 11b-12, 11d, 11 f, 11h, 11i and 12d.

“There’s no provision that defines or instructs as to 11e is there?” Lowell asked.

“No,” Starquest Shooter employee Gordon Cleveland replied as prosecutor Derek Hines objected, prompting a brief sidebar.

After the sidebar, Lowell returned to the language on the form regarding narcotics in 11.b-12, noting that it says that sale is prohibited to someone who “is” an unlawful user.

Lowell then reiteratedthat the form “skips” from 11d to 11f in its definitions.

“All I’m asking is: Is there an 11e definition? There is not, is there?” Lowell asked.

“No,” Cleveland replied.

Defense lawyer zeroing in on wording of drug question on ATF form

Owen Hayes

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

“Have you ever been” versus “are you.” That rhetorical distinction has been the theme of Abbe Lowell’s questioning of Starquest Shooter employee Gordon Cleveland, as he retook the stand this morning for continued cross-examination.

Lowell has been walking through each of the questions under Section 11 of the ATF form that Cleveland says he saw Hunter Biden fill out when he purchased the handgun. For each, he is making note of which ask questions of the purchaser are in the present tense, “are you,” or the past tense, “have you ever been.”

When he reached 11E, which asks, “Are you an unlawful user of, or addicted to” a narcotic drug?

“To be clear, E is one of those ones that says are, A-R-E?” Lowell asked.

“Yes,” Cleveland answered.

Prosecutor reveals they don't have access to all of Hunter Biden's laptop hard drive

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (46)

Daniel Barnesis reporting from the federal courthouse.

Rebecca Shabadis in Washington, D.C.

Daniel Barnes and Rebecca Shabad

While arguing over the admissibility of messages between Hunter Biden and Hallie Biden, prosecutor Leo Wise revealed that prosecutors do not actually have access to the entire contents of Hunter’s laptop hard drive.

After the laptop was seized by investigators, the data went through a filter team to preserve any privilege issues, Wise said. Because any privilege would belong to Hunter Biden, the defense was provided with the complete hard drive image, which means it has more evidence from the laptop that prosecutors don't have.

Court is in session

Gary Grumbach

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

The jury has entered at 9:35 a.m. and court is beginning for the day.

Judge Noreika appears to be frustrated with Hunter Biden's lawyer over exhibit management

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (49)
Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (50)

Gary Grumbach

Summer Concepcion

Gary Grumbach and Summer Concepcion

“Why are you doing that today when you expect to admit the exhibit today,” Judge Noreika said, appearing to be frustrated with the defense's exhibit management.

Noreika is clearly overwhelmed by the amount of evidence: “I got laptop and hard drive and I don’t even know what else I got,” she said. “iClouds, oh my!”

Prosecutors object to text messages Hunter Biden's lawyer wants to show

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (53)
Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (54)

Gary Grumbach

Rebecca Shabadis in Washington, D.C.

Gary Grumbach and Rebecca Shabad

Prosecutors raised a contentious objection about text messages Hunter Biden's lawyer wants to show during Hallie Biden’s testimony.

Prosecutor Leo Wise objected for several reasons. First, he said he didn’t receive them in a timely manner, saying he got them last night, and second, he said, “It’s full of inadmissible hearsay.”

Defense lawyer raises several issues at start of court

Gary Grumbach

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Lowell brought up several issues before the court was called into session.

One had to do with a second form of ID that may have been required for the ATF form, that was not photocopied. There was discussion over whether Lowell can ask about that second form of ID. “The gun store is not on trial,” Derek Hines responded.

Lowell then brought up the idea that some of his witnesses would be here this afternoon, but not all of them. If prosecutors wrap up their case this afternoon, Lowell said, he would like the court to break early for the day and start with defense witnesses tomorrow. We’ll see how things go, Judge Noreika said.

Jill Biden not in court day due to presidential travel

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (58)

Gary Grumbach

Alexandra Bacallao

Gary Grumbach and Alexandra Bacallao

Reporting from Wilmington, Del.

Hunter Biden once again has several friends and family in attendance, including Melissa Cohen Biden and Kevin Morris. First lady Jill Biden is not in attendance today because she is in Normandy with the president for a D-Day event.

As Hunter Biden walked into the courtroom, he waved to and shook the hands of almost everyone in the first and second rows behind the defense table.

Hallie Biden arrives at the courthouse

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (60)

Alexandra Bacallao

Summer Concepcion

Alexandra Bacallao and Summer Concepcion

Hallie Biden, the wife of Hunter Biden's late brother Beau Biden, arrived at the courthouse at 9:03 a.m. She is expected to testify about the romantic relationship she had with Hunter Biden after her husband's death.

Here are the prosecution's remaining witnesses

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (62)

Owen Hayes

Summer Concepcion

Owen Hayes and Summer Concepcion

Gun store clerk Gordon Cleveland, who sold Hunter Biden the handgun at the center of the case, is expected to continue his testimony this morning.

Here are the five remaining witnesses on the list the government included in its pretrial brief and displayed in opening statements:

  • Hallie Biden: The wife of the president’s late son Beau Biden, who was in a romantic relationship with Hunter Biden after Beau’s death, she observed Hunter Biden use drugs on multiple occasions during their relationship in the fall of 2018. While he was staying at her home during that time, she and her children searched his bags and vehicle in an effort to help him get sober, the pretrial brief says. They repeatedly found drug paraphernalia and drugs in his possession. She also witnessed Hunter Biden frequently lose his phones and change phones, explaining gaps in the text message timeline. She also exchanged various text messages with Hunter Biden.
  • Delaware State Police Senior Cpl. Joshua Marley: He is expected to testify about his response to an incident at Janssen’s Market, what Hunter Biden had admitted, and about evidence recovered. Hallie Biden threw the handgun out behind the grocery store, which was later recovered by someone else.
  • Former Delaware State Police Lt. Millard Greer: He is expected to testify about his recovery of the gun Hunter Biden purchased, as well as ammunition, speed loader and a brown leather pouch from the man who found them in the trash receptacle at Janssen’s Market.
  • Forensic chemist Dr. Jason Brewer: He is expected to testify about his analysis of the residue on the brown leather pouch Hunter Biden had used, and his opinion that the residue was cocaine based on his testing and examination of that evidence.
  • Drug Enforcement Administration Supervisory Special Agent Joshua Romig: He is expected to offer opinions, based on his training and experience, about coded messages sent by Hunter Biden and about other information disclosed to the defendant in the government’s expert disclosure.

Hunter Biden arrives in court

Alexandra Bacallao

Hunter Biden and his wife, Melissa Cohen Biden, have arrived in court ahead of the start of proceedings at 9 a.m.

House GOP sends DOJ criminal referral on Hunter and James Biden over impeachment inquiry testimony

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (64)

+2

Rebecca Kaplan

Kyle Stewart

Dareh Gregorian

Rebecca Kaplan, Kyle Stewart and Dareh Gregorian

Top House Republicans yesterday sent criminal referrals to the Justice Department recommending that President Joe Biden’s sonHunter Bidenand brother James Biden be charged with making false statements to Congress.

The letter from the three GOP committee chairmen to Attorney General Merrick Garland and special counsel David Weiss comes as Hunter Biden isstanding trialon unrelated gun charges brought by Weiss in federal court in Delaware. The trial began Monday.

The referrals also come less than a week after former President Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, wasconvicted by a juryin New York on felony chargesof falsifying business records.

The letter by House Oversight Chair James Comer, R-Ky., Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, and Ways and Means Chair Jason Smith, R-Mo., accused Hunter and James Biden of having “made provably false statements to the Oversight Committee and the Judiciary Committee about key aspects of the impeachment inquiry, in what appears to be a conscious effort to hinder the investigation’s focus on President Joe Biden.”

Read the full story here.

Where is President Biden today?

Megan Lebowitz

The president will continue his overseas trip in France today, heading to Normandy to commemorate the 80th anniversary of D-Day as his son's trial continues into its fourth day.

Biden will meet with veterans, deliver remarks and participate in a wreath laying ceremony to honor the Allied troops' major operation that shifted the tide of World War II.

At his federal trial on gun charges, Hunter Biden’s ex-wife and former girlfriend testified about his drug abuse, including his use of drugs around the time he purchased a gun. At the time of the purchase, Hunter Biden denied using drugs on a federal form. NBC News’ Ryan Nobles reports.

Here's what to expect at trial today

Zoë Richards

Additional cross-examination of Gordon Cleveland, the gun store employee who confirmed he sold Hunter Biden a firerarm in 2018, is expected to continue today at 9 a.m. A redirect of Cleveland is also possible.

The prosecution says it has six witnesses remaining, and prosecutor Derek Hines has said it is "possible" that they will rest their case today.

Takeaways from Day 3 of Hunter Biden’s firearms trial

Katherine Doyle

WILMINGTON, Del. — Three new witnesses took the stand in Hunter Biden’s gun trial yesterday, recalling in vivid color the defendant’sspiral into drug addiction, foiled attempts at entering rehab and fateful purchase of a firearm in late 2018, a year when his use of crack cocaine went out of control.

Joining Hunter Biden for the third day were first lady Jill Biden;his wife, Melissa Cohen Biden; close ally Kevin Morris;and other longtime friends and family members.

Read the full story here.

Hunter Biden trial highlights: Hallie Biden details tumultuous relationship and his addiction struggles (2024)
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