John Travolta, Jett Travolta

Courtesy of Travolta Family

In what will no doubt go down as the second most difficult day of his year, John Travolta took the stand this morning in the trial into the alleged $25 million extortion plot against his family.

Both Travolta and wife Kelly Preston arrived at the Bahamas courthouse this morning escorted by a fleet of security.

The actor took the stand and immediately began describing his recollection of the moments before his 16-year-old son Jett's death on Jan. 2.

Travolta said that Jett's nanny woke him and Preston up at roughly 10:15 a.m. that morning, informing them that the teen was found unconscious in his bathroom.

"I ran downstairs with my wife to help my son," Travolta said, adding that when he got to him, one of the boy's caretakers was already performing chest compressions. The actor quickly jumped into action and began administering CPR to his son.

That's about as far as Travolta got in his testimony before the court took their lunch break. He and Preston were quickly escorted back out of the courtroom and the star is expected to return to the stand this afternoon. Preston is not on the list of 14 witnesses that will be called during the trial.

Opening arguments kicked off yesterday, with the Bahaman chief prosecutor wasting no time getting to the heart of the matter.

"Contact was made with certain persons to communicate a threat to John Travolta," Bernard Turner said, referring to codefendants Pleasant Bridgewater, a former senator, and Tarino Lightbourne, an ambulance driver, who together are alleged to have attempted to extort $25 million from the grieving star.

At the root of the case is a refusal to transport document; the trial's first witness, police inspector Andrew Wells, said Travolta requested that Jett be taken directly to the airport rather than the hospital—the reasoning likely being that he could just as quickly get his son medical treatment in the U.S. as on the island—and signed a release form stating just that.

In the end, Jett was taken directly to the hospital after all. It's unclear what accounted for the change in decision or why the threat of publication of the signed document seemed like a good bargaining chip for the alleged extortionists.

The second witness to take the stand yesterday, paramedic Derrex Rolle, testified that Jett was already unresponsive when the emergency services arrived at the actor's vacation home.

The trial is expected to last three weeks.


Take a look back at the life of Jett Travolta.

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