Toxicologist, forensic pathologist who examined Ryan Sugar's body testify at trial
Fire destroyed this home on McTavish Street early Wednesday morning. (MORGAN CAMPBELL/CTV REGINA)
An expert witness from the RCMP national forensics service in Ottawa and a forensic pathologist testified in the first-degree murder trial of Colinda Hotomanie and Gregory Wolfe on Friday.
The pair is accused of killing 31-year-old Ryan Sugar. Sugar’s body was found in a burned out home in the 1500 block of McTavish Street on Oct. 11, 2016, six days after the home burned on Oct. 5.
Christopher Keddy, the expert witness from the RCMP testified through a video link in Ottawa. Keddy specializes in testing bodily fluids submitted by police departments across Canada. Keddy testified he received one urine sample and five blood samples from Sugar. He told court there was a 70 per cent carbon monoxide level in Sugar’s blood. Death usually occurs at 60 per cent.
According to Keddy, Sugar’s blood alcohol content was also three times the legal limit when it was tested. He also had levels of methamphetamines in his blood consistent with a high dose of methamphetamine or consistent use over time.
After Keddy’s testimony wrapped up, forensic pathologist Dr. Andreea Nistor took the stand. Nistor performed the autopsy on Oct. 12, 2016.
Nistor testified that her autopsy found that Sugar died of smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide poisoning. She went on to say that when she received his body, it was covered in soot. She also found soot in his nose, mouth and windpipe, leading her to conclude that Sugar was alive and breathing when the fire was burning.
Nistor also testified that while Sugar’s body was not burned, it did show signs of being exposed to high temperatures.
In addition, Nistor said she noted cuts and bruises and lacerations on several parts of his body, including his legs, face, head and arms. The Crown showed the court photos of many of the injuries.
Despite the variety of injuries to Sugar’s body, Nistor testified that most of the wounds were superficial and that none of them caused his death.
The trial is expected to last for several more weeks.
CTV Regina’s Karyn Mulcahy is at court.