MONTREAL — A bizarre note naming Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his wife Laureen was part of the evidence viewed by jurors at Luka Rocco Magnotta’s first-degree murder trial Tuesday.
The jury took a closer look at photos showing the contents of four parcels that were mailed to political offices in Ottawa and schools in Vancouver.
One of them contained a neatly written note on pink paper that included an obscenity and read: “Stephen Harper and Lauren (sic) Teskey will know who this is. They f–ked up big time.”
Teskey is Harper’s maiden name.
Magnotta, 32, faces a first-degree murder charge in the May 2012 slaying and dismemberment of Chinese student Jun Lin. He is also charged with criminally harassing Harper and other members of Parliament; mailing obscene and indecent material; committing an indignity to a body; and publishing obscene material.
Magnotta pleaded not guilty on Monday to all five charges. He has admitted to authoring the crimes, but his lawyer has indicated he will mount a defence of mental disorder.
On Tuesday, the jurors were able to view photos taken in 2012 by three Montreal police crime-scene technicians.
One officer’s photos showed the parcels that were mailed to Ottawa and Vancouver.
Caroline Simoneau testified about items recovered from their police counterparts in both cities in June 2012: boxes and their contents.
One of the parcels mailed to Ottawa was destined for the Conservative Party of Canada, while the other was sent to Liberal party headquarters in Ottawa. The Vancouver ones were sent to two schools.
One box had a heart drawn in black marker at the bottom, while another contained dark stains.
Among the items recovered from the boxes were pink tissue paper, gift bags and four handwritten notes, including at least one bearing the name of “Lauren Teskey.” While the name is misspelled, it clearly refers to the prime minister’s wife.
In another note destined for the Liberal headquarters, she is mentioned again. “You need to speak to Laureen Teskey and her family, lots to hide,” it read.
One of the boxes sent to Vancouver also contained a threatening poem that read: “Roses are red, violets are blue, the police will need dental records to identify you, bi–h.”
Another officer’s photographs took jurors inside the infamous Apartment 208 in a west-end Montreal building where Lin’s slaying is alleged to have occurred.
Chantal Turmel told the jury she was instructed by investigators that a video had been circulating on the Internet and that she was sent to the apartment to find certain items: a poster from the movie “Casablanca,” a wine bottle with the wording “Wish for Love,” and a yellow T-shirt. She says she found all three outside the building.
Later, Turmel showed photos from inside the apartment, which was rented by Magnotta. It was largely empty of actual contents, but there were red stains and marks throughout — in particular in the refrigerator and on a mattress.
She also snapped the photo of an inscription in red marker inside the closet: “If you don’t like the reflection, don’t look in the mirror. I don’t care.”
Forensic biologists will testify next week as to what those marks were.
“It smelled a bit rotten, ” Turmel testified, referring to the apartment.
Finally, a third officer’s photos traced the route to a heavy brush-filled area where detectives found a human skull on July 1, 2012, more than one month after the discovery of a torso.
Richard Dionne took photographs that traced a route from the Angrignon subway station to an adjoining Montreal park where a mummified skull was found in tall grass on July 1, 2012.
Magnotta’s lawyer, Luc Leclair, told the court Monday his client has been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder shortly before the slaying and that he suffered from schizophrenia.
Crown prosecutor Louis Bouthillier told the jury that Magnotta had been planning a murder for six months and the actions were planned and deliberate.
The jury of eight women and six men will hear evidence over several weeks.
The trial is expected to last between six and eight weeks and feature some 60 witnesses.