EL PASO, Texas - More trouble may be ahead for El Paso businessman Billy Abraham, who's been accused of perjury by an Austin judge ruling on a case dealing with elevators at one of his dilapidated buildings.
Abraham was released from prison just eight months ago, after serving 18 months of a 2-year sentence for failure to render aid after striking and killing a pedestrian. In a story broken by our news partners at El Paso Inc, Abraham allegedly lied while testifying two months ago in another case involving his Toltec building.
The elevators in Abraham's Toltec building are now out of service. But he not only allegedly lied to an Austin judge trying to determine whether to issue an order to shut down the system, he also allegedly tried to keep his El Paso elevator repairman, Cromwell Morgan, from testifying.
Judge Hunter Burkhalter wrote: "Abraham's testimony was not credible and was impeached by his own actions during the hearing ... Almost everything of substance stated by abraham has proven to be a lie."
The 61 year-old Abraham is accused of forging a document from Morgan he gave to the judge, stating the elevators inside the beat up building, not inspected for eight years, were being repaired.
As you climb the stairs to the second floor of the Toltec building, you can see a lot of its former beauty, including an amazing fireplace. But you also see holes in the ceiling, boarded up windows and pigeons living inside the building.
Abraham lives on the fourth floor, but didn't answer when ABC-7 knocked. ABC-7 also tried to call him, but could not reach Abraham.
Morgan later turned text messages over to the judge showing Abraham was trying to keep him from testifying:
"Crom the state is calling you don't answer."
Followed by, "Don't answer."
Another read: "Don't say anything."
And finally this one: "We shut down the elevators 4-12-17" when in fact they weren't shut down, according to the judge, until a week later.
Abraham's mother, Margaret, is also accused of sending texts to Morgan, offering him money, according to court documents.
A spokesperson for the District Attorney's office said they've not received the case, but El Paso Police have been notified.
Abraham's assistant arranged and interview for ABC-7 with him Tuesday afternoon, but she later cancelled it and sent a statement from someone named Juliann Smith, who claims to have been the liaison between Abraham, and his elevator repairman and state regulators. That statement, which denies allegations we're not aware of anyone making, is posted on kvia.com.
It states, "The Abraham commission company operates at the highest level of integrity."