Palm Desert, CA
The man accused of murdering a Palm Desert teacher claims he doesn’t remember most of the night she was killed, but says he does remember putting her lifeless body in her car.
Michael Franco is accused of murdering his girlfriend, Jill Thomas Grant, in December 2013.
She was a popular math teacher at Palm Desert High School.
Franco took the stand Wednesday.
He described a history of drug abuse and arrests including an armed robbery and pepper spraying a former boss.
Franco claimed that Grant gave him methamphetamine for the purpose of sex the night of her murder.
The prosecution fired back that Grant tried to encourage Franco to be sober and was even drug testing him.
The defense brought up memory problems from a motorcycle crash, while the prosecution questioned that.
Franco appeared emotional several times, describing Grant as his best friend.
They had dated for about a year when he said a fight started December 22nd.
Franco said in the course of the night he injected more meth than he ever had, so that most of the night is fuzzy.
Jill’s body was found along a golf course the following day in Indio.
Franco was arrested a couple days later.
He made two attempts to kill himself in jail.
Once in 2013, once in 2014.
Attorneys for both the prosecution and defense said they could not speak with us until the trial is over.
The case is expected to wrap up in about a week, and then the jury will decide Franco’s fate.