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Crown focuses on inconsistencies in Garnier’s testimony

Christopher Garnier
Christopher Garnier


A Crown attorney has accused a Halifax man of trying to find a way to blame off-duty police officer Catherine Campbell for her own death.

“There was a struggling on the bed, wasn't there?” Christine Driscoll asked as she cross-examined Christopher Garnier Tuesday at his murder trial.

“No. There wasn't,” he replied. “I did not punch Ms. Campbell.”

The Crown alleges Garnier punched and strangled the 36-year-old Truro police constable who grew up in Stellarton after they met at a Halifax bar, and used a compost bin to dispose of her body near Halifax's Macdonald Bridge.

The Crown focused its cross-examination Tuesday on inconsistencies in his story about what happened the night Campbell died.

For example, his first responder training taught him not to move injured people, especially those with suspected neck injuries. However, Garnier shook/moved Campbell and prosecutor Carla Ball said this would make a neck injury worse. Garnier said that, "I wasn't thinking about what I was doing."

Ball also focused on the noises Campbell made as she died, saying, "You're a trained first responder and you don't know what the noise is you're hearing?"

Earlier, Ball also asked Garnier about Campbell’s positioning on the pullout couch mattress in the McCully Street apartment the night she died. She noted that Garnier was haunted by the image of it but there were inconsistencies in how he recalled her positioning.

Garnier said that, "I told them what they wanted to hear," regarding his police interview on Sept. 16, 2015.

Under cross-examination, Garnier said that "I was feeling a lot of things," the day of his arrest and his friend Mitch Devoe told him earlier that police had searched both his home and the nearby dumpster.

Regarding the night Campbell died, Garnier recalled the conversation about domination as it stood out from everything else up to that point. He recalled how Campbell got onto the pullout couch bed. Regarding the domination aspect, Ball told Garnier, "you're uncomfortable because this person you don't know, according to you, has suggested domination." She also said, " You're so uncomfortable you can't even look this stranger in the face but you hit her three times."

Ball pointed to Garnier's testimony that he hit Campbell with his non-dominant hand while not looking at her.


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