Anchorage
26° F
Mostly Cloudy
Mostly Cloudy

Witness Says Wells Looked 'Fine' the Morning of Coworkers' Murder

By Mallory Peebles, Crime and Law Enforcement, Natural Resources and Parks Reporter, Fill-in Anchor, mpeebles@ktuu.com
Published On: Apr 10 2014 04:26:47 PM AKDT
Updated On: Apr 10 2014 05:40:51 PM AKDT
ANCHORAGE -

An acquaintance of James Wells, accused of killing two Kodiak Coast Guardsmen almost two years ago, took the witness stand Thursday to describe seeing him on the morning of April 12, 2012.

According to the prosecution's timeline, Annette Ecret would have seen Wells less than 20 minutes after he allegedly shot Electrician's Mate First Class James Hopkins and retired Chief Boatswain's Mate Richard Belisle in the head at Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak.

The defense has argued that Wells is innocent and was just headed home that morning to switch out a flat tire.

Prosecutors who called Ecret to the stand Thursday asked when and where she saw Wells. Ecret said it was at 7:25 a.m., while she was driving to work. She said he was headed in the opposite direction, towards his home. 

Ecret said she and Wells waved at each other as they passed.

The defense asked how he looked, Ecret said, "He looked fine."

A number of Thursday's witnesses help set the scene of the double homicide's events.

Federal prosecutors say Wells shot and killed Hopkins and Belisle, then went home to craft his alibi that he had a flat tire.

The defense says the prosecution's case is built on circumstantial evidence. Neither the gun believed to have been used in the murder, nor any DNA evidence that would link Wells directly to the crime has been found

Next week experts are expected to testify about the nail in Wells' tire, as well as video surveillance that recorded a vehicle on base the morning of the crime.