Wayne Mil­lard died im­me­di­ately af­ter gun­shot, trial told

The Welland Tribune - - Canada & World - LIAM CASEY

TORONTO — The trial of a twice­con­victed mur­derer heard Wed­nes­day from a foren­sic pathol­o­gist who de­scribed the grue­some de­tails of the au­topsy of the man’s fa­ther, whose death was ini­tially ruled a sui­cide.

Dr. Jayan­tha Herath tes­ti­fied that Wayne Mil­lard, 71, had his eyes closed when he was shot in the face at close range — the bul­let en­ter­ing his left eye at an an­gle and be­com­ing lodged in the right side of his brain.

No one could sur­vive that in­jury, Herath said. “He would die im­me­di­ately within sec­onds.”

Mil­lard’s son, 32-year-old Dellen Mil­lard, has pleaded not guilty to first-de­gree mur­der in the death of his fa­ther on Nov. 29, 2012. It’s the third mur­der trial for the younger Mil­lard, who is serv­ing two con­sec­u­tive life sen­tences for killing a for­mer lover and a Hamil­ton man who went miss­ing in May 2013.

Jus­tice Mau­reen Forestell warned the court be­fore Herath showed graphic im­ages from the au­topsy. Gasps filled the court­room and one woman walked out af­ter a pho­to­graph of Wayne Mil­lard’s eye wound was dis­played on large-screen tele­vi­sions.

Dellen Mil­lard, seated in the pris­oner’s box wear­ing a grey blazer with his cus­tom­ary side braid, re­coiled at the im­age.

The pathol­o­gist also ex­am­ined Wayne Mil­lard’s liver, which he said was fatty and in­flamed. The most com­mon cause is due to al­co­hol abuse, he tes­ti­fied, but it could also be from ex­ces­sive fat in the body or from painkillers such as opi­oids.

A woman who was dat­ing Wayne Mil­lard at the time of his death pre­vi­ously told court he was an alcoholic, but was work­ing to de­crease his al­co­hol con­sump­tion. Dellen Mil­lard also told po­lice that his fa­ther was an alcoholic, de­pressed and stressed out from his re­cently trans­formed fam­ily avi­a­tion com­pany, Mil­lar­dair.

The coro­ner ruled Wayne Mil­lard’s death a sui­cide within two days and stuck with that con­clu­sion in his fi­nal re­port seven months later. Dr. David Evans pre­vi­ously told court that he be­lieved there was a “rea­son­able chance” Wayne Mil­lard killed him­self, but noted it was pos­si­ble some­one else pulled the trig­ger.

Court has heard that the younger Mil­lard called his fa­ther a fail­ure and blamed him for Mil­lar­dair’s fi­nan­cial woes shortly be­fore his death.

The trial has heard that Dellen Mil­lard bought the hand­gun found be­side his fa­ther’s body from a weapons dealer months ear­lier.

ourt doc­u­ments show Mil­lard’s DNA was found on the han­dle of the gun.

A crime scene re­con­struc­tion ex­pert is ex­pected to tes­tify Thurs­day.

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