Nightly News   |  May 02, 2012

Cate Edwards breaks down in court

John Edwards’ daughter, Cate Edwards, was at her father’s side in court Wednesday, but left the room prior to testimony from a former campaign staffer and close friend of Elizabeth Edwards. NBC’s Lisa Myers reports.

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>>> emotions were running high at the criminal trial of john edwards today. as a friend of john edwards ' late wife elizabeth testified about the anguish she suffered following her husband's affair. our report tonight from nbc's lisa myers .

>> again today, kate edwards was at her father's side as they arrived for court. she's been her dad's most stalwart supporter, always seated behind him in the court room . today for the first time, the emotional stress of this very personal family drama burst into public view. as christina reynolds, a former campaign staffer and close friend of elizabeth edwards began to testify about knowledge about john edwards ' affair, he turned to his daughter. i don't know what coming. do you want to leave? he was heard asking kate . kate broke down in tears and hurriy eied out of the courtroom.

>> it was very emotional, very touching, very real, very human when kate edwards left the courtroom tcrying.

>> christina reynolds testified in the summer of 2007 , elizabeth told me mr. edwards had an affair and she believed it still might be going on. she also accounted a dramatic encounter a day after the national enquirer 's first story about his affair. mrs. edwards was very upset and she was fairly vocal. she stormed off and collapsed into a ball on the ground. she testified that a few minutes later, elizabeth confronted her husband again, yelling to him, you don't see me anymore, and angrily tearing off her blouse and bra.

>> there's no question that the jury has to be moved hearing about the pain to elizabeth edwards caused by her husband, john edwards .

>> kate edwards returned to the courtroom only a few minutes later and shed a few more tears when the witness, under questioning by the defense, testified that she saw john edwards attending to elizabeth in the final moments before she died. lisa myers , nbc news, greensboro, north carolina .