GAINESVILLE, Fla. - A South Florida man accused of killing his friend while he was away at college testified in his murder trial Thursday.
Pedro Bravo took the stand Thursday morning, telling the jury he attempted suicide about a dozen times in his life.
"I was too nervous to do anything -- I don't like pain -- and I couldn't bring myself to hang myself or anything like that," Bravo testified. "I tried to take some pills, see what would happen, but lo and behold, I'm still here."
Bravo faces first-degree murder and six other charges in the death of University of Florida freshman Christian Aguilar in September 2012.
Prosecutors have painted a picture of Bravo as a jealous ex-boyfriend who followed Erika Friman to Gainesville to win her back, only to find she was dating Aguilar. The three attended Doral Academy together.
Bravo has pleaded not guilty to all counts, saying he and Aguilar fought before the UF student stormed out of his car.
"I didn't want to tell the police that I got into a fight right now because I want to try to keep the police as far away from me fighting Christian because I didn't want to get into any trouble," Bravo said of why he lied to police. "I wanted to find my friend. I wanted to know where he was and I wanted him to get back home, but I didn't want to tell them and get myself in trouble when I could possibly avoid it."
Bravo admitted to having his friend's phone and book bag.
During cross examination, prosecutor Brian Kramer grilled Bravo about the DNA evidence found in his SUV, a shovel believed to be the same one used to bury Aguilar that was found near Bravo's apartment and suicide notes in which he professed his love for Friman, calling himself a "monster" for hurting Aguilar.
"If this is your plan, if you wrote this and you meant it, Mr. Bravo, if that's what is a fact in this case, then you killed Chris," Kramer said.
Aguilar's remains were discovered weeks later in a wooded area.
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