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

  • Hundreds of thousands march in London to demand new Brexit referendum

    World News CBC News
    Hundreds of thousands of people opposed to Britain's withdrawal from the European Union marched through central London on Saturday to demand a new referendum as the deepening Brexit crisis risked sinking Prime Minister Theresa May's premiership. Source
  • Trump, Israeli leader have mutually beneficial relationship

    World News CTV News
    JERUSALEM -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was glowing as he stepped up to a podium in the backyard of his Jerusalem home to welcome U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to a holiday dinner. Source
  • French yellow vests protest in Paris amid tighter security

    World News CTV News
    PARIS -- Thousands of French yellow vest demonstrators were marching through Paris on Saturday as authorities enforced bans on protests in certain areas and displayed enhanced security measures to avoid a repeat of last week's riots in the capital. Source
  • Somalia government minister among 5 victims in extremist attack

    World News CBC News
    Gunmen stormed a government building in Somalia's capital after a suicide car bombing on Saturday, killing at least five people including the country's deputy labour minister, police said, in the latest attack by Islamic extremist fighters in the Horn of Africa nation. Source
  • Majority of Americans favour stricter gun laws: poll

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- A new poll shows a majority of Americans favour stricter gun laws, and most believe schools and places of worship have become less safe over the last two decades. The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research survey included interviews conducted before and after this month's mass shooting at two mosques in New Zealand. Source
  • Twin bombing at Afghan ceremony kills 4, including official

    World News CTV News
    KABUL -- A twin bombing at a public ceremony in southern Afghanistan on Saturday killed at least four people, including a provincial official, and wounded more than 30, officials said. Omar Zwak, spokesman for the governor of Helmand province, said the bombings targeted a celebration of Farmer's Day in a sports stadium in the provincial capital, Lashkar Gah. Source
  • Economy named most important issue to Alberta voters, Vote Compass survey says

    Canada News CBC News
    The economy has ousted accountability as the top issue for Albertans this election, according to a survey of more than 30,000 people across the province. In the online questionnaire known as Vote Compass, Albertans were asked to answer the question "What issue is most important to you in this election?" During the last provincial election, Vote Compass respondents had selected from a predetermined list of topics. Source
  • U.K.'s embattled prime minister faces huge anti-Brexit march

    World News CTV News
    LONDON -- British Prime Minister Theresa May is easing away from plans to hold a third vote on her troubled Brexit withdrawal plan as protesters gathered in central London on Saturday to demand a second referendum. Source
  • Suspect charged in girl's death in the Kasabonika Lake First Nation

    Canada News CTV News
    KASABONIKA LAKE , Ont. - Police have charged a suspect in the death of a six-year-old girl from the Kasabonika Lake First Nation. Officers with the Nishnawbe-Aski Police Service were called to a residence on Wednesday to investigate a report that a girl had been assaulted. Source
  • Park rangers in Mozambique stage a grassroots rescue effort following Cyclone Idai

    World News CBC News
    As rain continues to fall on Mozambique, where hundreds of thousands have been displaced by Cyclone Idai, park rangers are stepping up to help those in danger. Hundreds of rangers from Gorongosa National Park, located in the centre of the country in southeast Africa, are delivering aid to those in need and rescuing people stranded by the flood waters — sometimes from the top of six-metre-high termite mounds. Source