Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Court Told Winnipeg Senior Beaten, Sexually Assaulted before Being Strangled

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Court Told Winnipeg Senior Beaten, Sexually Assaulted before Being Strangled

Article excerpt

Trial told elderly woman strangled

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WINNIPEG - A 73-year-old woman who was sexually assaulted and beaten in a Winnipeg parking garage was then strangled to death, possibly with a scarf, Manitoba's chief medical examiner testified Tuesday.

Dr. Thambirajah Balachandra said Elizabeth LaFantaisie had been hit in the face and had broken bones in her leg.

"Either the deceased was punched or the deceased was jammed against a blunt object," Balachandra told court. "Great force was used in this case.

"Strangulation from the scarf or ligature would have been significant. It was tied very tightly."

Balachandra said LaFantaisie's body was discovered in a body bag in the trunk of her car, a black scarf tied around her neck.

Thomas Brine, 29, has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder.

Prosecutors have suggested LaFantaisie, who worked as a housekeeper, was the victim of a random attack. …

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