Anthony Beharry was a friend of John’s and also lived in the neighborhood. Like Lauren, he wasn’t at the party. But he testified that in the days that followed, John contacted him and asked him to help get rid of the gun. This, despite the fact that Antonio Russo had apparently hinted to a friend that he’d disposed of it in a sewer.
Beharry testified that a day or two after the murder, though he couldn’t remember specifically which day, he and John called each other back and forth, during which time Beharry nervously took the gun, put it in the trunk of his car, and left it under a box on the street for someone else to pick up. This mystery person, who was never identified, was supposed to leave a bag of cash under the box in it’s place, which Beharry was supposed to pick up and deliver to John. This final transaction, according to Beharry, never took place, because he called John back and said he was too afraid.
Beharry has also recanted his testimony. He now says that none of this ever happened. Like Lauren, he now says he was threatened by the DA’s office. Again, some of the more disturbing excerpts from his sworn affidavit are transcribed below:
“At this time, my daughter was less than two years old and I was embroiled in a custody and visitation dispute in family court… I was threatened with arrest and told that if I wanted to see my daughter I must cooperate with them.”
“After I was threatened with arrest, I was told I could go home if I cooperated with them.”
“As a result of the pressure, I finally said that I had disposed of a gun for John shortly after Mark Fisher’s murder. This was false….In fact, I did not see John Giuca for approximately a week after the murder.”
“I lied when I testified that I disposed of a gun after Mark Fisher’s death and in describing how I disposed of the gun. I did this because of the threats made against me by the police and DA that I would be arrested and I was afraid that I would not be able to see my daughter anymore and would suffer other harm as well, such as losing my job.”
Evidence of the pressure brought to bear on Beharry is strewn throughout the trial transcripts:
Q. Good morning, Mr. Beharry.
Q. You nervous?
Q. Take your time.
Q. Need water to drink? Are you ok?
A. I’m all right.
And later, ASN asks him specifically about his daughter. No other witness, with the exception of Mr. Fisher, was asked about their children:
Q. Do you have any children?
Q. How many?
Q. Boy or girl?
Q. How old is she?
Q. Do you know a person by the name of John Giuca?
Beharry’s recantation doesn’t come as a surprise. After he gave his sworn statement, Beharry told John’s defense attorney he was being pressured into lying. This conversation between Beharry and John’s lawyer did not come up during trial.