Crown asks jury to reach guilty verdict in Toronto 'suitcase' murder trial

TORONTO -- A Crown lawyer is urging a Toronto jury to reach a guilty verdict for a man charged with first-degree murder in the death of his daughter, saying his "rein of terror" over the girl was what killed her.

See Full Article

Everton Biddersingh has pleaded not guilty in the death of 17-year-old Melonie, whose charred body was found in a burning suitcase 21 years ago.

Melonie's identity remained a mystery for almost 18 years until a tip to police led to her father's arrest in March 2012.

The trial has heard that Melonie and two brothers came from Jamaica, where they were born, to Canada in 1991 to live with their father and stepmother.

Jurors have heard that Melonie was not sent to school and suffered brutal beatings, food deprivation and gut-wrenching abuse at the hands of her father.

Crown prosecutor Mary Humphrey says Melonie was treated like a slave and was "withering away" before her father's eyes but he did not stop abusing her.

"His reign of terror over Melonie ultimately resulted in her death," said Humphrey. "But for his actions and his omissions, Melonie would have been alive today. She would have been 38 years old."

Biddersingh took away Melonie's freedom, food, health and her dignity, Humphrey said.

"Everton took away everything from Melonie," she said. "He took away her will to live."

After Melonie's death, Humphrey told the jury, Biddersingh tried to eliminate any evidence his daughter had even existed.

"He stuffed her in a suitcase, he took her to a remote area...he set her on fire," she said.

The jury has heard that Melonie died on Sept. 1, 1994.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Palestinian teen shot dead in Israeli raid on West Bank

    World News CTV News
    JERUSALEM - Health authorities said a 16-year-old Palestinian died early Wednesday after being wounded during clashes with Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank, the latest in a wave of violence that has persisted for months. Source
  • Russia launches fresh offensive, wants sanctions relief to free up Ukraine food supply routes

    World News CBC News
    Russian forces launched offensives on towns in eastern Ukraine on Wednesday, with constant mortar bombardment destroying several houses and killing civilians, Ukrainian officials said, as Russia focuses its attack on the industrial Donbas region. Russia has been focused on attempting to seize the separatist-claimed Donbas's two provinces, Donetsk and Luhansk, and trap Ukrainian forces in a pocket on the main eastern front, according to Ukrainian officials. Source
  • Winnipeg River, already flowing at a record volume, slated to rise even higher

    Canada News CBC News
    The Winnipeg River is flowing at a record volume in Manitoba because officials no longer have any other option to control flooding across a vast swath of northwestern Ontario and northern Minnesota. Flooding on the Winnipeg River, which is running at about three-and-a-half times higher its usual volume this time of year, has already forced hundreds of people from their homes and washed out roads in Whiteshell Provincial Park. Source
  • How one stone gave a Halifax-area park heritage status

    Canada News CBC News
    A hulking, rocking chunk of granite that's been attracting visitors for two centuries and is rumoured to have caught the attention of royalty has had its historical importance to the Halifax area set in stone. The Halifax Regional Municipality awarded heritage status last week to the Rocking Stone and the surrounding Kidston Lake Park in the community of Spryfield. Source
  • Ukraine updates: Russian shelling kills 6 civilians

    World News CTV News
    What's happening in Ukraine today and how are countries around the world responding? Read live updates on Vladimir Putin and Russia's invasion of Ukraine. KYIV, Ukraine -- A regional governor in eastern Ukraine says at least six civilians have been killed by the latest Russian shelling. Source
  • Ukraine updates: Ukraine remains defiant about peace terms

    World News CTV News
    What's happening in Ukraine today and how are countries around the world responding? Read live updates on Vladimir Putin and Russia's invasion of Ukraine. DAVOS, Switzerland -- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy says his country will not give up land in return for an end to the war with Russia following its invasion. Source
  • Wharf of reserve base in St. John's collapsing into sink holes, set for demolition

    Canada News CBC News
    After years of speculation, the Department of National Defence has confirmed a significant section of a naval reserve base in St. John's is set for demolition. HMCS Cabot consists of two large buildings on the south side of St. Source
  • What's a derecho and why is it so destructive? The science behind this powerful storm

    Canada News CBC News
    When Canadian tornado expert David Sills studied the forecast on Saturday morning, he never expected the line of storms headed for Windsor, Ont., would soon strengthen into Canada's first derecho in decades, wreaking havoc across southern Ontario and Quebec. Source
  • Where has Doug Ford been during Ottawa emergencies? Someplace else

    Canada News CBC News
    With just about a week left until election day, Progressive Conservative Leader Doug Ford was supposed to make his first — and presumably only — campaign stop in Ottawa on Thursday. But after a devastating storm ripped through the capital and the surrounding areas in eastern Ontario, Ford's Ottawa trip was cancelled. Source
  • Conservative leadership candidates gather in Quebec for final debate of the race

    Canada News CBC News
    Conservative leadership candidates will gather tonight for the final official debate of the race — a French-language contest that will challenge the candidates' languages skills as they fight for the top job. Tonight's debate in Laval, Que. is the last campaign event where candidates will have a chance to convince would-be voters to take out party memberships before the June 3 deadline. Source