“A string of oddly bad luck”: Accused killer’s lover testifies at Bosma trial

News Mar 23, 2016 by Susan Clairmont The Hamilton Spectator

Flicking her hair over her shoulder, the woman in the witness box looks at the lawyer and says haughtily: "I don't know who you are."

The lawyer is assistant Crown attorney Tony Leitch, part of the team prosecuting Dellen Millard and Mark Smich, the men accused of killing Tim Bosma.

The woman is Lisa Whidden, who started off as Millard's Realtor, then became his lover and is now under a subpoena as a Crown witness at his murder trial.

The reason Whidden does not recognize Leitch is because she has never met him. The jury has learned, through the course of this trial, that the Crown usually meets with its witnesses to prepare them for court. That was not the case here. Nor did Whidden, as the jury heard, ever give a statement to police, though she was asked to do so several times.

Now add to those details the smile Whidden bestows upon Millard when she enters the courtroom — she has not been allowed contact with him since his arrest on May 10, 2013 — and we have some context for the strained testimony that follows.

She is here because police seized her cellphone and found texts between her and Millard that are relevant to the Crown's case.

On May 6, 2013 Tim, 32, took two men for a test drive of the diesel truck he was selling. He never came home. The Crown intends to prove Millard, 30, and Smich, 28, shot him in his truck and cremated his remains in a livestock incinerator.

Whidden first met "Dell" in early 2012 when she called him about a house he was selling. She sold the place for him that spring and they began an "intimate" relationship that carried on until his arrest.

Whidden says: "I had a life. I didn't focus on him." She also says: "We seemed to be good friends."

Leitch drags the reluctant Whidden through a handful of the hundreds of texts between her cell and Millard's. Some are business related, most are personal. Records also seem to show she sometimes contacted Millard using her children's' phones.

Whidden interrupts occasionally to insolently correct the Crown on errors or proclaim that this or that is not relevant, to which Justice Andrew Goodman assures her that is not for her to decide.

A number of texts indicate Millard — whom other witnesses described as rich — is out of money.

A deal he has to sell a condo in Toronto's trendy Distillery District falls through. Millard hadn't even finished paying for the $700,000 property when he tries to off-load it. He winds up taking out a high-interest loan to float the deal.

Other texts from Millard point to plans he makes in May 2013 that coincide with key dates related to Tim's murder. For instance, he tells Whidden he's going away on May 1 for 10 days.

On May 5 Millard texts: "working on trading one of my gas trucks for a diesel."

On the morning of May 10, Millard sends Whidden a text that his life is "stress filled." At 3:55 p.m. he instructs her to tell a mutual friend "I'm too hot, stay away."

"I actually thought he was sick," Whidden tells the court.

When Millard texts that someone he works with has "set him up" she replies: "This has been a string of oddly bad luck." (Millard told her his house had been broken into and items stolen, she says.)

Before that day is over, Millard is under arrest for Tim's abduction and theft of his truck.

The next day, Hamilton police show up at Whidden's door. When she refuses to hand her phone over, they take it and handcuff her.

"They made me bleed actually," Whidden says, flicking her hair back again.

Susan Clairmont’s commentary appears regularly in The Spectator. sclairmont@thespec.com

905-526-3539 | @susanclairmont

“A string of oddly bad luck”: Accused killer’s lover testifies at Bosma trial

News Mar 23, 2016 by Susan Clairmont The Hamilton Spectator

Flicking her hair over her shoulder, the woman in the witness box looks at the lawyer and says haughtily: "I don't know who you are."

The lawyer is assistant Crown attorney Tony Leitch, part of the team prosecuting Dellen Millard and Mark Smich, the men accused of killing Tim Bosma.

The woman is Lisa Whidden, who started off as Millard's Realtor, then became his lover and is now under a subpoena as a Crown witness at his murder trial.

The reason Whidden does not recognize Leitch is because she has never met him. The jury has learned, through the course of this trial, that the Crown usually meets with its witnesses to prepare them for court. That was not the case here. Nor did Whidden, as the jury heard, ever give a statement to police, though she was asked to do so several times.

Now add to those details the smile Whidden bestows upon Millard when she enters the courtroom — she has not been allowed contact with him since his arrest on May 10, 2013 — and we have some context for the strained testimony that follows.

She is here because police seized her cellphone and found texts between her and Millard that are relevant to the Crown's case.

On May 6, 2013 Tim, 32, took two men for a test drive of the diesel truck he was selling. He never came home. The Crown intends to prove Millard, 30, and Smich, 28, shot him in his truck and cremated his remains in a livestock incinerator.

Whidden first met "Dell" in early 2012 when she called him about a house he was selling. She sold the place for him that spring and they began an "intimate" relationship that carried on until his arrest.

Whidden says: "I had a life. I didn't focus on him." She also says: "We seemed to be good friends."

Leitch drags the reluctant Whidden through a handful of the hundreds of texts between her cell and Millard's. Some are business related, most are personal. Records also seem to show she sometimes contacted Millard using her children's' phones.

Whidden interrupts occasionally to insolently correct the Crown on errors or proclaim that this or that is not relevant, to which Justice Andrew Goodman assures her that is not for her to decide.

A number of texts indicate Millard — whom other witnesses described as rich — is out of money.

A deal he has to sell a condo in Toronto's trendy Distillery District falls through. Millard hadn't even finished paying for the $700,000 property when he tries to off-load it. He winds up taking out a high-interest loan to float the deal.

Other texts from Millard point to plans he makes in May 2013 that coincide with key dates related to Tim's murder. For instance, he tells Whidden he's going away on May 1 for 10 days.

On May 5 Millard texts: "working on trading one of my gas trucks for a diesel."

On the morning of May 10, Millard sends Whidden a text that his life is "stress filled." At 3:55 p.m. he instructs her to tell a mutual friend "I'm too hot, stay away."

"I actually thought he was sick," Whidden tells the court.

When Millard texts that someone he works with has "set him up" she replies: "This has been a string of oddly bad luck." (Millard told her his house had been broken into and items stolen, she says.)

Before that day is over, Millard is under arrest for Tim's abduction and theft of his truck.

The next day, Hamilton police show up at Whidden's door. When she refuses to hand her phone over, they take it and handcuff her.

"They made me bleed actually," Whidden says, flicking her hair back again.

Susan Clairmont’s commentary appears regularly in The Spectator. sclairmont@thespec.com

905-526-3539 | @susanclairmont

“A string of oddly bad luck”: Accused killer’s lover testifies at Bosma trial

News Mar 23, 2016 by Susan Clairmont The Hamilton Spectator

Flicking her hair over her shoulder, the woman in the witness box looks at the lawyer and says haughtily: "I don't know who you are."

The lawyer is assistant Crown attorney Tony Leitch, part of the team prosecuting Dellen Millard and Mark Smich, the men accused of killing Tim Bosma.

The woman is Lisa Whidden, who started off as Millard's Realtor, then became his lover and is now under a subpoena as a Crown witness at his murder trial.

The reason Whidden does not recognize Leitch is because she has never met him. The jury has learned, through the course of this trial, that the Crown usually meets with its witnesses to prepare them for court. That was not the case here. Nor did Whidden, as the jury heard, ever give a statement to police, though she was asked to do so several times.

Now add to those details the smile Whidden bestows upon Millard when she enters the courtroom — she has not been allowed contact with him since his arrest on May 10, 2013 — and we have some context for the strained testimony that follows.

She is here because police seized her cellphone and found texts between her and Millard that are relevant to the Crown's case.

On May 6, 2013 Tim, 32, took two men for a test drive of the diesel truck he was selling. He never came home. The Crown intends to prove Millard, 30, and Smich, 28, shot him in his truck and cremated his remains in a livestock incinerator.

Whidden first met "Dell" in early 2012 when she called him about a house he was selling. She sold the place for him that spring and they began an "intimate" relationship that carried on until his arrest.

Whidden says: "I had a life. I didn't focus on him." She also says: "We seemed to be good friends."

Leitch drags the reluctant Whidden through a handful of the hundreds of texts between her cell and Millard's. Some are business related, most are personal. Records also seem to show she sometimes contacted Millard using her children's' phones.

Whidden interrupts occasionally to insolently correct the Crown on errors or proclaim that this or that is not relevant, to which Justice Andrew Goodman assures her that is not for her to decide.

A number of texts indicate Millard — whom other witnesses described as rich — is out of money.

A deal he has to sell a condo in Toronto's trendy Distillery District falls through. Millard hadn't even finished paying for the $700,000 property when he tries to off-load it. He winds up taking out a high-interest loan to float the deal.

Other texts from Millard point to plans he makes in May 2013 that coincide with key dates related to Tim's murder. For instance, he tells Whidden he's going away on May 1 for 10 days.

On May 5 Millard texts: "working on trading one of my gas trucks for a diesel."

On the morning of May 10, Millard sends Whidden a text that his life is "stress filled." At 3:55 p.m. he instructs her to tell a mutual friend "I'm too hot, stay away."

"I actually thought he was sick," Whidden tells the court.

When Millard texts that someone he works with has "set him up" she replies: "This has been a string of oddly bad luck." (Millard told her his house had been broken into and items stolen, she says.)

Before that day is over, Millard is under arrest for Tim's abduction and theft of his truck.

The next day, Hamilton police show up at Whidden's door. When she refuses to hand her phone over, they take it and handcuff her.

"They made me bleed actually," Whidden says, flicking her hair back again.

Susan Clairmont’s commentary appears regularly in The Spectator. sclairmont@thespec.com

905-526-3539 | @susanclairmont