Murder suspects sought refuge near Hagersville, jury told
A man who initially agreed to let two people camp behind his house near Hagersville later changed his mind when he grew suspicious of the duo, a jury was told Wednesday.
Trevor Doxtater testified in a Superior Court in Welland that Richard Doxtator, 40, and Jasmine Doxtator, 38, arrived at his home on June 22, 2015 and asked if they could stay on his rural property on the Six Nations Reserve.The couple had a child with them.
“I asked him did you beat someone up or did you kill someone or hurt someone and he just put his head down and wouldn’t look at me,” Trevor told assistant Crown attorney Timothy Hill.
Based on Richard Doxtator’s reaction, Trevor said he quickly regretted offering to let them stay.
When he questioned him further, he said Richard Doxtator told him to watch the news if he wanted to learn more. It was then that Trevor told them they were no longer welcome on his property.
“I came to the decision they couldn’t stay,” he said.
Two days prior to the knock on Trevor’s door, the bloody body of Giuseppe (Joe) Caputo, 70, was found on the floor of his Portage Road apartment.
Richard and Jasmine Doxtator, who are cousins and residents of Hamilton, have pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder before a sixman, six-woman jury.
Court heard earlier Caputo suffered 18 “cutting wounds” to his body.
Steven Spink, a detective with the forensic unit of the Niagara Regional Police, testified blood stains and a knife were found in a Jeep the Crown says the Doxtators drove from Hamilton to Niagara Falls in June 2015.
The knife was analyzed at the Centre of Forensic Sciences in Toronto and DNA was extracted from the handle. The genetic profile from the handle did not match the victim’s DNA, court was told.
Also on Wednesday, the jury was shown a photograph of the flowered shirt Caputo was wearing when he was killed.
Under cross examination by Richard Doxtator’s lawyer, Jaime Stephenson, Spink testified the cut marks on the shirt appeared to be approximately two centimetres long.
“None as great at four centimetres?” Stevenson asked. “Yes,” Spink replied. Court heard earlier the blade of the knife found in the Jeep was estimated to be 11 centimetres long and four centimetres wide.
Donna Brooks, a taxi driver, testified she picked up a man and woman in Hamilton on the morning of June 19, 2015 and drove them to a destination approximately five kilometres away.
“They were very well dressed,” she said. “They appeared tired.”
During the 10-minute ride, Brooks said the man had his arm around the woman and that they were whispering to each other.
The trial continues Thursday before Judge James Ramsay.