Day 4 of Laura Babcock murder trial

Dellen Millard and Mark Smich are charged with the first-degree murder of Laura Babcock, who vanished in 2012.

  • There are no more witnesses to call.
     
    Justice Michael Code tells the jury we are ahead of schedule, but promises a full day tomorrow with three witnesses scheduled to testify.
     
    That's it for us here on the liveblog. Thanks for reading!
  • Millard asks about Christina Noudga.
     
    "We both dated her," says Millard.
     
    "Yes," answers Gordon.
     
    Millard doesn't have any further questions.  Dungey has none.
  • Co-accused Dellen Millard now cross examines Andrew Gordon.
     
    "Hi Andy," Millard says as he walks up to the podium.
     
    Millard asking Gordon what he thought about Mark Smich on their first meeting.
     
    "I remember he sort of looked and acted like a gangster," Gordon answered, adding Smich often rhymed.
     
     
  • Gordon dated Christina Noudga from 2009 to 2011.
     
    During opening statements, the Crown alluded to a possible motive for Babcock's alleged murder. 
     
    Noudga and Millard were dating in the months before Babcock disappeared. The Crown says Babcock apparently told Noudga she and Millard were still sleeping together. 
     
    In a text conversation about Babcock in April 2012, Millard wrote to Noudga, "First I'm going to hurt her, then I'll make her leave. I will remove her from our lives."
  • The Crown asks Gordon about Millard and Babcock's relationship. He says they were dating. He said he remembers one occasion they were hanging out as a large group, Babcock and Millard went to the bedroom for 30 to 40 members. 
     
    He says this was around January 2012.
  • Crown Katie Doherty takes Gordon through questioning. He spent time at Millard's home in Etobicoke, condo downtown, and airport hangar.
     
    Gordon says two of his high school friends lived at Millard's home in Etobicoke, along with Millard's father - though he never saw him.
     
    They played video games, smoke marijuana, drink, hanging out in a large group.
     
     
  • We are back in session now, and the Crown has called Andrew Gordon. 
     
    He knows Dellen Millard, they met through friends in high school in 2008.
  • Justice Michael Code now calling for lunch recess. We'll be back at 2:15 p.m.
  • Dellen Millard cross examines Powell, asking him to list the number of ways people can cross into the US illegally.
     
    Powell won't get into that, for security reasons.
     
    Now Thomas Dungey is up, asking about people being smuggled into the States. Powell concedes it happens.
     
    Dungey presses about illegal crossings.
     
    "No, there's technology. The entire northern border is patrolled with technology or personnel," Powell says.
  • Smich's friend David Cronin has now wrapped his testimony. 
     
    Crown, Ken Lockhart, has now called its next witness, Michael Powell. He's a director with US Border Control. 
     
    Powell was contacted by Toronto Police to see if Laura Babcock ever crossed into the United States. The last time she visited the US was in May 2011. Since then, she's not travelled south through official borders. 
     
    This testimony - much like what we heard from the TD Bank employee - helps build the Crown's case about Babcock's alleged murder, at the hands of co-accused Dellen Millard and Mark Smich.
  • Dungey lists some more recent incidents about Cronin's past, fighting with his family, being kicked out.
     
    Cronin doesn't cower.
     
    "I worked very hard to get my life together. Yes ,I had problems when I was young. Yes, I was mischievous. I know you're trying to discredit my information. But I've worked very hard to get where I am today."
     
    Dungey circles back to the incident in 2012 at Smich's mother's garage.
     
    "You all thought it was a bunch of bullsh*t?" Cronin agrees but adds he eventually changed his mind, "after we found out further truth behind it, and got more information about the story." 
  • Dungey asks Cronin about his own "sordid past" and questions 19 incidents he was involved in.
     
    Cronin says "those happened when I was younger, I'm not going to lie." 
     
    Dungey again tries to discredit Cronin as a witness, but Cronin remains calm and concedes he got into some mischief. 
     
    "I'm 22 now," Cronin says, adding he hasn't gotten into trouble since he was 19. He studied pre law.
  • Dungey now asks Cronin about "rap culture" and to explain the different styles of rap. Cronin says it ranges from Christian to gangsta rap. 
     
    Cronin tells Dungey Mark Smich was not a rapper. 
     
    Dungey abandons that line of questioning and now is going after Cronin about graffiti he did. Cronin says he did it for art when he was 13 and he never got in trouble about it. 
  • Dungey uses a similar line of questioning with Cronin that we saw yesterday when Desi Liberatore was in the witness box.
     
    Duney hammers Cronin about his drug use and his memory of the encounter in Smich's mother's garage. While Dungey's technique at times can seem forceful, his voice loud, Cronin stands his ground.
     
    "You're trying to confuse me here because I was high. I was 14 at the time, I'm 22 now." 
     
    Cronin is much more composed now after he broke down in tears before the morning recess.
     
    The Crown had showed him a video of Smich rapping - something the jury has now seen several times. Cronin has never seen the video, but confirms it's the same rap he saw Smich perform in 2012. 
     
    "It's just alot to process," said Cronin as he held tissues to his eyes.
     
  • Jury is back in the courtroom now after a brief recess. Smich's lawyer Thomas Dungey is now questioning David Cronin.
  • Cronin says he reported the information about the alleged murder to police in May 2013. He alerted the vice principal at his school, who called Toronto Police.
     
    He'd heard media reports about a missing girl.
     
    This is unlike his friend Desi Liberatore, who actually only exchanged information with police after he was in custody for another matter in 2014.
  • Yesterday Smich's lawyer Thomas Dungey tried to chip away at Liberatore's credibility and memory. Liberatore admitted to being a heavy drug user.
     
    Cronin agrees they were passing around a joint, and there was some booze, but neither was his thing.
     
    "My mind was very clear," Cronin tells the Crown.
     
    He also adds the friends never confronted Smich about the rap or his confession.
  • Cronin says "honestly at the time I didn't believe it." He said Mark seemed like he just wanted to be "the big cool guy."
  • After a 30 minute delay, day 4 of the Laura Babcock murder trial is underway.
     
    David Cronin, 22, is a friend of Mark Smich and is facing questioning now from Crown Jill Cameron.
     
    Yesterday we heard from Desi Liberatore who was also part of Smich's inner circle. He told the jury about an encounter in Smich's mom's garage, where Smich pulled out an iPad and start performing a rap he wrote.
     
    The Crown read the lyrics during opening statements:
     

     The bitch started off all skin and bone/

    now the bitch lay on some ashy stone/

    last time I saw her's outside the home/

     and if you go swimming you can find her phone.

     

    Smich said it was more than just a rap. Cronin is now recounting the same tale.

  • Good morning! We are still standing in the hallway, waiting to go through security and get into the courtroom. Hope to be with you soon!
Powered by ScribbleLive Content Marketing Software Platform