Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Smoke, Crackling Sound Coming from Incinerator in 2012, Smich's Ex Tells Babcock Trial

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Smoke, Crackling Sound Coming from Incinerator in 2012, Smich's Ex Tells Babcock Trial

Article excerpt

Accused's ex saw incinerator in action, Babcock trial told

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TORONTO - The ex-girlfriend of one of two men accused of murdering a young Toronto woman and burning her remains in a massive animal incinerator saw the large machine in operation the year the alleged killing occurred, a court heard Friday.

Marlena Meneses told a jury she was ordered not to pay attention one night in 2012 as Dellen Millard and Mark Smich worked with the device known as The Eliminator at an aircraft hangar owned by Millard in Waterloo, Ont.

Meneses -- who started dating Smich in the spring of 2012 -- left to take Millard's dog for a walk and to smoke some marijuana as the two accused operated the machine, court heard. When she walked back to the hangar, she saw the black incinerator outside, she said.

"I saw smoke coming out of it and they had a crackling noise," Meneses said, noting that the machine ran for hours but she didn't know what Millard and Smich were burning.

The Crown alleges Millard and Smich killed Laura Babcock and burned her remains in the incinerator in late July 2012. The two accused have pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder.

Prosecutors allege Babcock, 23, was killed because she was the odd woman out in a love triangle with Millard and his girlfriend, Christina Noudga. Millard, who is representing himself, has said, however, that he didn't care about the animosity between the two women.

Babcock's body has not been found.

Court has heard Millard first got The Eliminator on July 5, 2012. Meneses said she didn't know what an incinerator was when she first saw it in Millard's hangar.

"I asked what an incinerator was for and Mark said it was for farm animals," she said. "I thought it was weird because Dellen didn't have any farm animals."

Court has heard that Millard told others he was going to use the incinerator for a mobile pet cremation business, run with his veterinarian uncle. …

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