Trial begins for Jeremiah Isezaki, accused for his part in plot - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Trial begins for Jeremiah Isezaki, accused for his part in plot to kill cop

Posted: May 14, 2018 3:39 PM Updated:

Did police jump the gun? Key witness Janessa Corpuz thinks so. The Agat woman took the stand today in the trial against defendant Jeremiah Isezaki. Back in 2012, Isezaki was arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit murder and terrorizing, both as felonies. He and others allegedly plotted to kill a GPD police officer. Corpuz testifying that they had asked for her help, but never explicitly to carry out a murder.

"Locked, loaded, and suited up" - Corpuz used these words to describe police reaction to the very mention of  Isezaki. "The minute they heard Jeremiah Isezaki - oh he has a criminal record, all the way from juvi. Oh he has this, he's a danger to the community. He's a danger. That was it. Mr. Isezaki was a target right when I mentioned his name. That's the honest truth," she stated.

Isezaki is charged with conspiracy to commit murder and terrorizing, both as felonies. The case is over six years old. It is alleged Isezaki and others plotted to kill GPD Officer Benny Babauta. Corpuz testified that Isezaki approached her to lure Officer Babauta to an isolated location so they could "take him off the streets."

Isezaki, she stated, believed the cop had "set him up" and planted a gun and drugs on him in a prior arrest. Not once, she repeatedly told jurors, did he explicitly say he wanted to kill Officer Babauta.

"Mr. Isezaki came to me not saying I wanna go and I want to kill him. I just need you to do this. He did not say that. Mr. Isezaki strongly believes that he was set up by Officer Benny Babauta, on the last, I guess, arrest. On the high speed chase. All he wanted to do was prove his innocence. How? We'll never know how because the Guam Police Department didn't wait for that. They didn't wait for the time, date, location. They just jumped."

She also recalled her encounters with authorities. The former prosecutor on the case interrogated and yelled at her and even threatened to arrest her for recanting her words. An AG investigator also urging her not to talk to defense counsel.

Her encounters with GPD also unpleasant. One senior officer, she recalled, leaving her in fear of her and her family's safety.

"What makes you think that Jeremiah Isezaki's not going to kill you after he kills officer Benny Babauta? You think he's going to make you walk away?" she was questioned.

Babauta remains on the force. GPD Spokesperson Sgt. Paul Tapao confirming Lt. Babauta is assigned to support as the Acting Division Chief. According to court filings, he is listed as a potential witness in the case.

Trial will resume on Tuesday afternoon.

If the defendant's name sounds familiar, Isezaki is charged with over a handful of others in last year's murder in the prison. He is expected to cooperate in that case.

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