Kim Walker, who is accused of killing James Hayward
The daughter of a Saskatchewan man says her father shot her boyfriend, then leaned down and drew a bloody cross on the dying man's forehead.
Kim Walker is charged with second-degree murder in the March 2003 death of James Hayward in Yorkton. Hayward, 24, was dating Walker's daughter, Jadah, who was 16 at the time.
She testified Wednesday that Hayward was a "bad influence" on her life - that he dealt drugs and injected her with morphine.
Jadah Walker said her father came to Hayward's house the day of the shooting and pleaded with her to come home.
"He placed his hand on my arm and said something along the lines, 'Please come home Jadah. Please come with me,'" she said.
That's when Hayward came forward and yelled at Walker to get out of the house, she said.
"James was yelling and then my father reached across, grabbed his gun and started firing."
Hayward fell to the floor, she said. When the shooting was over, her father put down his gun on a weight bench and started collecting the shells.
"It was just chaotic."
Jadah Walker acknowledged under questioning from Crown prosecutor Robin Ritter that her father touched the body when he bent over to "put a cross on James's forehead."
"What was he making this cross on James's forehead out of?" asked Ritter.
"Bodily fluids," said Walker.
"And specifically," pressed Ritter.
"Blood, specifically," replied Walker.
Court heard that she had moved in with Hayward on her 16th birthday - against the wishes of her father. She said Hayward and her dad had numerous discussions during which her father begged Hayward to leave the Walker family alone.
"They didn't get along. My father was primarily there for my well-being and James really didn't like it."
Jadah Walker also testified that Hayward had threatened her parents, suggesting that "for $3,000 you can get rid of somebody."
The young woman, who at times wiped away tears, said Hayward was selling drugs, including marijuana and cocaine. She said it was his idea for her to use drugs. She said it became routine for them to use drugs eight or 10 times a day.
Court heard that Kim Walker petitioned to have his daughter held for 72 hours in a psychiatric ward. By then, her weight had dropped to about 95 pounds from 135 pounds. She went back to Hayward's house after she was released - it was the day of the shooting.
Justice Ellen Gunn cautioned the jury about the testimony.
"If you accept this evidence, you may conclude that Mr. Hayward was a person of bad character. You must not use this evidence to conclude that, because of this, he was unworthy of the protection of the law. The character of the deceased in no way justifies or excuses any possible criminal conduct towards him," said Gunn.
Defence lawyer Balfour Der told reporters outside court that Jadah Walker's testimony shows that "her father saved her life." Der said she was in the best position of anyone to see what happened.
Court also heard from three young men who were in the home at the time of the shooting. Joey Austman, Mitchell Steininger and Kevin Yaremko. All three gave various accounts of Walker entering the home and of Hayward yelling at Walker to get off his property before the shooting started.
They ran out of the house, fearing for their lives, and flagged down a motorist to take them to the "cop shop."
Ritter told the jury during opening arguments that evidence will show Walker went to Hayward's home with a loaded handgun and two loaded clips in reserve. The Crown contends Walker emptied his gun, hitting Hayward five times.
Bullets and fragments were found in the walls and the floor, court heard.
RCMP Sgt. Scott McMurchy, who was one of the first officers to respond to a call that shots had been fired, testified Tuesday that he saw Walker walking out of Hayward's home. The officer entered the house and saw Walker's daughter supporting Hayward's body on the floor.
An RCMP firearms expert testified Wednesday that he found bullet holes and gunshot residue on a basketball jersey that Hayward was wearing at the time. Grant Veitch, who is now retired from the force, said the residue indicates some of the shots were fired within a two-foot range of Hayward. Some of the holes did not have residue, indicating the shots came from more than three feet away, said Veitch.
Veitch, who was also present at the autopsy, said there were "numerous areas of damage caused by bullets."
The Crown is expected to call two more witnesses and then the defence will present its case.
This is the second time Walker is being tried. The Saskatchewan Appeal Court ordered a retrial last June after it learned that the judge and lawyers at Walker's first trial had meetings without him. The Appeal Court said that was "a fatal error" because an accused person must be present for all of his trial.
Walker's family and Hayward's family were both in the courtroom on Wednesday, each side tearfully listened to the testimony.
Hayward's mom, Lorrie Getty, clutched a small photo of her son. She said outside the courthouse that the testimony was difficult to hear.
"The bit about the blood on the forehead, that was something new, and I was warned about it late last night that she might say that," Getty said. "It's kind of surreal."Source: The Canadian Press