Suspect suggests drug dealer killed pair
Downey denies killing Sara Baillie and her daughter, Taliyah Marsman
Double-murder suspect Edward Downey said he went to Sara Baillie’s home the day she was murdered and her daughter went missing, but he had nothing to do with their deaths.
Instead, Downey said, he left Baillie’s home while she was in an argument with a mystery drug distributor named Terrance and the man’s unnamed friend.
And Downey said just before he left Baillie’s Panorama Hills northwest basement suite on July 11, 2016, he was asked by the unknown male to cut off a piece of duct tape for him.
Downey told defence lawyer Gavin Wolch he pulled off a strip about 18 inches in length and handed it to Terrance’s friend.
Evidence during the Crown’s case showed two of Downey’s fingerprints were found on the sticky side of duct tape wrapped around Baillie’s face and neck.
Downey, 48, faces two charges of first-degree murder in connection with the slaying of Baillie and her five-year-old daughter, Taliyah Marsman, whose body was discovered three days later in a stand of trees on a rural property northeast of Calgary.
“Mr. Downey, I’m going to ask you some very direct questions,” Wolch said, near the end of his examination of the accused.
“Did you kill Sara Baillie?” the lawyer asked.
“No, I did not kill Sara Baillie,” Downey said.
“Do you know who did?” “I thought I knew who did, but I never actually seen him do it so I can’t really say,” he replied.
Downey said he never intended Baillie to be injured when he went to meet Terrance at his residence so he could buy cocaine.
“Mr. Downey, did you kill Taliyah Marsman?” Wolch continued.
“No, I did not kill Taliyah Marsman,” Downey said.
“Do you know who did?” “No, I do not,” Downey said, as the child’s father, Colin Marsman, cursed at him from the courtroom gallery.
“You (expletive) coward,” he said, before storming out of the courtroom as Justice Beth Hughes admonished the crowd to keep quiet.
Downey said he only learned of Taliyah’s death when he was in police custody.
“I didn’t feel good,” he said. “I felt bad, it’s an innocent little girl dead.”
Downey said he had met Terrance at a Tim Hortons and they discussed a drug sale.
They then went to Baillie’s nearby home to consummate the deal, but Downey never explained why it was her residence they went to to conduct business.
Downey said that when he left, both mother and child were alive and he later arranged to complete the drug purchase at another spot.
He said he ended up driving eastbound on McKnight Boulevard and east of the city in Conrich looking for Terrance’s “stash,” not far from where the girl’s body was found.
Under cross-examination, Crown prosecutor Carla MacPhail asked Downey why his cellphone tower pings suggested he was farther east than Conrich, closer to where Taliyah was discovered.
“Your trip to the Conrich Gas Plus really doesn’t explain it,” MacPhail said of the cellphone evidence.
“It doesn’t explain why your overlapping cell coverage is significantly east of the corner of Township Road 250 and Conrich Road,” MacPhail said.
“What do you want me to say, I was at the gas station,” Downey said.
His cross-examination continues Thursday.