Erika Friman took the stand in a Florida courtroom to testify against her ex-boyfriend, who's accused of murdering their mutual friend in a jealousy-fueled plot.
Pedro Bravo, 20, is accused of killing Christian Aguilar in 2012. Authorities say he was enraged after discovering that Aguilar was dating Friman.
The three had been high school friends, and after Friman entered college, she began dating Aguilar, something she hid from Bravo.
“I lied to him because he was at a very sensitive point in his life, I supposed,” she said in court Wednesday. “I didn’t want to throw him over the edge and say, ‘By the way, I’m dating a mutual friend of ours.’”
Bravo eventually found out about the romance. That relationship caused him to poison and strangle the 19-year-old University of Florida student, hiding Aguilar’s body in a remote field, police said.
Aguilar’s body was discovered 22 days later.
A focal point for the trial has been Bravo’s sketch pad, which authorities say was filled with hate-fueled messages.
“No one will stop me,” he wrote in one passage, prosecutors say. “I will get out of Miami and into Gainesville by January 2013 and I will get her back.”
Surveillance cameras captured the men shopping together, with Bravo buying a shovel and duct tape. The tape was later found near Aguilar’s body.
Bravo has denied killing Aguilar.
Editor’s note: A previous version of this story reported Erika Friman’s testimony that she arranged a meeting between Pedro Bravo and Christian Aguilar after Bravo threatened suicide. While Friman said she had arranged for the two to meet in the past, she says she did not arrange their meeting on the night Aguilar was last seen alive.