Chris and Julie Albert took the stand in the Karen Read murder trial. Here’s what they said

DEDHAM, Mass — More people close to John O’Keefe and Karen Read, including Chris Albert and his wife Julie Albert, took the stand on Thursday in Norfolk Superior Court in Dedham as the Karen Read murder trial entered Day 8 of witness testimony

Read, 44, of Mansfield, is facing charges including second-degree murder in the death of her Boston police officer boyfriend John O’Keefe.

Chris Albert is the brother of Brian Albert, who lived at 34 Fairview Road in Canton, where O’Keefe’s body was found in the snow during a blizzard in January 2022. The Alberts were out at a bar with Read and O’Keefe just hours before his death.

Chris Albert testified that he and his family knew State Police Trooper Michael Proctor, the lead investigator assigned to the Read murder case, well before they were questioned in O’Keefe’s death.

Julie Albert testified that she was a longtime friend of Proctor’s sister, Courtney. She denied using her friend as an intermediary to Proctor and the case focusing on Read.

But Read’s defense claimed Julie and Proctor spoke 67 times over the phone in the seven months following O’Keefe’s death.

“I don’t deny it but I don’t remember the exact amount,” Julie said when asked, “Do you deny that you spoke with her over the phone 67 times?”

The couple testified that they were at the Waterfall bar in Canton but that they went to bed when others ended up going to Brian Albert’s home.

The Alberts said they lived two doors down from O’Keefe, saying, “We were friendly.”

PLAY-BY-PLAY FROM DAY 8 OF TESTIMONY (Thursday, May 9, 2024):

1 p.m.

  • Judge Beverly Cannone dismisses jurors for the day. Testimony will resume Thursday at 9 a.m.

12:20 p.m.

  • Yannetti says phone records between Feb-Sep 2022 show Julie Albert and Courtney Proctor spoke on the phone 67 times.
  • Yannetti also claimed they had a 12-minute phone call the day Read was arrested.
  • Albert denies she used the lead investigator’s sister as an intermediary.

12:15 p.m.

  • Julie Albert says she has provided childcare to Courtney Proctor’s children. She confirms the two “go back a long way.”

12:10 p.m.

  • Julie Albert said that more than a week after O’Keefe’s death, MSP lead investigator Michael Proctor visited Albert for questioning.
  • She said she knew him and is close with his sister Courtney. Albert said that they would occasionally go out together.

12:00 p.m.

  • Julie Albert says she woke up on January 29 to a missed call from Jen McCabe that was made at 5:55 a.m.
  • She went to Fairview Rd. to deliver donuts for her nephew’s birthday around 8:30 am.
  • Julie Albert said that she was told inside the home by Brian Albert, family that something happened to O’Keefe.
  • Julie Albert said she did not see anything off inside the Fairview Rd home.
  • The defense will now question Julie Albert.

11:50 a.m.

  • Julie Albert says she left very shortly after Karen Read and John O’Keefe arrived to Waterfall. Albert added that Read was holding a drink under her jacket when she arrived.
  • Albert said she left because she had a migraine.

11:40 a.m.

  • Julie Albert says she went to the Waterfall with family, and friends on January 28. She said that her brother-in-law, Brian Albert, and his friend Brian Higgins got there after them.

11:30 a.m.

  • Julie Albert, wife of Chris Albert is called to the stand.

11:15 a.m.

  • The trial goes to recess.

11:10 a.m.

  • The prosecution asks about the picture while the Alberts were watching O’Keefe’s house. Albert says that O’Keefe thought it was ‘hilarious.”

11:05 a.m.

  • Yannetti shows a picture of Albert and his wife on O’Keefe’s property. Albery says he sent it to O’Keefe when he wasn’t home.
  • The defense says this gives context to text messages sent from Albert on Jan 28 referring to O’Keefe’s lawn.

11:00 a.m

  • Albert said he and his wife used to refer to O’Keefe as “Mr. Nebbercracker,” a character from the animated film Monster House. They referred to him as the “old, curmudgeonly” figure because he wouldn’t want anyone on his lawn.

10:50 a.m.

  • Albert says he got home just before 12:30 a.m., and his son Colin was not home. He says Colin came in and said goodnight after he had dozed out.

10:40 a.m.

  • Yannetti acknowledges that the glass Read was carrying with the lime might have been water and Albert says he saw no signs that Read was drunk.

10:30 a.m.

  • Yannetti presents text messages between Albert and O’Keefe from January 28th.
  • An immediate sidebar is called.
  • The defense presses the fact that Albert had connections with Higgins, Proctor, and local law enforcement.

10:18 a.m.

  • Albert confirms he had a relationship with Proctor before the MSP lead investigator came to question him.

10:09 a.m.

  • Albert says he is friends with Berkowitz and almost never socialized with him.
  • The defense presents a picture of former Canton PD Chief Kenny Berkowitz with Chris Albert.
  • Albert says it’s from one of his political fundraisers.
  • Yannetti emphasizes the town selectman’s role in overseeing police affairs.

9:55 a.m.

  • Defense’s David Yannetti questions Albert about his family, connections, role, and “power” in Canton. The prosecution objects multiple times. As the defense brings up a possible link to lead investigator Michael Proctor, a sidebar is called.

9:50 a.m.

  • Albert says he went to the Fairview Rd home that morning for about an hour. Says his brother Brian, Brian Higgins, and others were there.

9:45 a.m.

  • Albert says that the next morning, his wife told him that O’Keefe was found dead on the Fairview Rd’s home front lawn.
  • Albert said he left Waterfall around the same time Read and O’Keefe did. Albert went in the opposite direction of O’Keefe and Read.

9:40 a.m.

  • Albert also says that his wife wasn’t feeling well and left early due to a migraine. Towards the end of the night Albert bought most of the group fireball shots.
  • Albert says that the group considered going to the pizza shop to celebrate nephew Brian Jr’s birthday. Chris Albert didn’t want to eat pizza because he was doing a weight-loss challenge.

9:26 a.m.

  • Albert remembers O’Keefe and Read coming to the Waterfall after his brothers Brian and Brian Higgins. He recalls Read walking in holding a glass with clear liquid and a lime under her jacket.

9:20 a.m.

  • Albert says O’Keefe came to his shop D & E Pizza on January 28 with his nephew. He claims the two were texting throughout the night trying to meet up at Canton bars. Albert says he eventually went to meet up with his wife.

9:09 a.m:

  • Christopher Albert— the brother of Brian Albert who owned the Fairview Rd. home where O’Keefe was found dead is called to the stand.


New video of John O’Keefe and Karen Read appears to show affection between the couple the night before he was found dead in a blizzard outside a home in Canton in January 2022.

On Wednesday, the jury in Read’s murder trial saw the video as a number of close friends took the stand and recalled the night before O’Keefe’s death.

The prosecution showed O’Keefe with friends at Canton’s CF McCarthy’s hours before he died. Read joined them later and drank with the group.

Tuesday’s testimony focused on a busted cocktail glass and a piece of broken taillight in the snow. The prosecution said the taillight and other evidence led them directly to Read.

The defense has argued that Read is a scapegoat for a well-connected group of people, who were at a party inside 34 Fairview Road in Canton on the night of O’Keefe’s death. Read’s attorneys have long argued that O’Keefe was beaten up inside the home and then dragged outside.

Prosecutors claim Read struck O’Keefe with her luxury Lexus SUV while making a three-point after dropping him off at the home. They allege she fled the scene and left him to die in a blizzard in January 2022.

Last week, jurors traveled to Canton for a tour of the crime scene outside retired Boston Police Officer Brian Albert’s former home, where the body of O’Keefe was found.

Also, a focus during last week’s testimony was Read’s demeanor and the words she uttered at the crime scene. Testimony from two police officers and two firefighters described Read as distraught and screaming and that O’Keefe had no pulse and wasn’t breathing.


Witness testimony in Karen Read murder trial from Wednesday, May 8, 2024

WATCH LIVE: New video evidence expected on Day 7 of testimony in Karen Read murder trial.

WATCH LIVE: New video evidence expected on Day 7 of testimony in Karen Read murder trial.

Posted by Boston 25 News on Wednesday, May 8, 2024

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