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State

Harris: Brothers used drugs on night of slayings

PEORIA (AP) — An Illinois man testifying in his brother's murder trial says they went to the victims' home during a night of drinking, smoking marijuana and using cocaine.

Christopher Harris is charged with murder in the beating deaths of Rick and Ruth Gee and three of their children at their home in Beason in 2009.

Jason Harris testified Wednesday that his brother went into the house alone carrying a tire iron. Minutes later, Jason Harris said, he heard a loud thump from inside and a woman screaming.

He also said his brother had asked him if he'd ever noticed one of the family's daughters, 16-year-old Justina Constant, hitting on him.

Jason Harris is also accused in the case but agreed to testify in exchange for lesser charges and a 20-year prison sentence.

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