Hollywood Says He Thought Police Would Shoot Him

An admitted marijuana supplier accused of kidnapping a 15-year-old boy over a drug debt and ordering his death testified at his murder trial that he fled the country for nearly five years because he thought police would kill him on sight.

Under cross-examination Wednesday, Jesse James Hollywood repeated his previous contention that he took Nicholas Markowitz in 2000 but neither ordered nor was present at his slaying, which inspired the 2007 movie "Alpha Dog."

Prosecutors contend that Hollywood, 29, and two friends kidnapped Markowitz from Los Angeles' San Fernando Valley on Aug. 6, 2000, because his half brother, Ben Markowitz, owed a drug debt. Prosecutors have said it was $1,200; Hollywood testified he was owed $2,500.

The teenager was taken to Santa Barbara, where he was held for several days, during which he smoked marijuana and drank with his kidnappers.

"There were girls, weed and beer, and they were hanging out," Hollywood testified in Santa Barbara County Superior Court. "I asked Nick if he wanted to come back to the Valley, and he said, 'No, I'm cool.'"

On Aug. 8, Markowitz was driven away by two Hollywood associates on what was supposed to be a trip home, Hollywood testified.

He said he learned a couple of days later that instead the boy was shot and buried in the foothills near Santa Barbara.

After the killing, Hollywood said he believed police would shoot him on sight and fled. He lived in Colorado, the Mojave Desert and Canada -- which he found too cold -- before he saw the 1984 comedy film "Blame It on Rio" and decided to head to Brazil.

There, he sold vacation properties and fathered a now-3-year-old boy before his arrest in 2005.

"You knew you couldn't be extradited if you had a child there, right?" Lynn asked.

Hollywood said he learned about that rule only after arriving in Brazil. The mother of his child was six months pregnant when he was arrested.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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