Michael Jackson-Bolanos to be cross examined when Samantha Woll murder trial resumes

On Wednesday, defendant Michael Jackson-Bolanos took the stand in his own defense.

Jackson-Bolanos is on trial for the 2023 murder of Samantha Woll.

One of the questions posed to him, "Did you kill Samantha Woll?"

His answer, "Absolutely not."

Jackson-Bolanos told a story about how he broke into cars near downtown Detroit when he discovered Woll’s body, stabbed several times, outside her home last October. 

He said he didn’t call 9-1-1 because of his criminal past as a convicted thief.

After listening to Jackson-Bolanos phone calls from jail, the judge recessed for the holiday weekend. 

Meaning when the case resumes, prosecutors will have a chance to cross-examine the suspect.

"They’re going to start off with questioning him: So what did you tell police when you first talked to him? You lied. Then you lied to your lawyer when you talk to him on the phone. You lied to other people. You lied about killing Samantha Woll," said Todd Perkins, a well known Detroit-area defense attorney.

Perkins is not associated with this case, but he provided insight on what we’ve learned so far in the high-profile trial involving the death of a prominent local Jewish leader.

"It’s a great loss to the community," he said. "Homicide has spent a lot of time on this case."

Why did Jackson-Bolanos take the stand though?

"In this case, it’s all about credibility," Perkins said. "It’s all about whether you believe the individual. All the defense attorney has to do is have someone believe he’s truthful."

Another big piece to this puzzle is the involvement of Woll’s ex-boyfriends. 

The defense has tried to tie the murder to one of them, including Jeffrey Herbstman, who previously took the stand. 

Prosecutors say he initially admitted to killing Woll but then recanted — saying he was under the influence when he spoke to police.

Michael Jackson- Bolanos will return to the stand Monday when his trial resumes. 

Michael Jackson-Bolanos