Ac­cused can’t ex­plain blood stains

DNA a match with stab­bing vic­tim

Ottawa Citizen - - CITY - AN­DREW SEY­MOUR asey­mour@ot­tawac­i­t­i­zen.com

It was some­thing Richard Keith Blake didn’t have an ex­pla­na­tion for.

A spot of blood, in the mid­dle of the red Roots T-shirt he was wear­ing when he was ar­rested, that be­longed to a man who had been stabbed about 20 times dur­ing a fren­zied mid­dle-of-the-night at­tack in his home by an in­truder armed with a pair of knives.

Blake told a jury he had never been to the man’s house, much less stabbed him or slit the throat of his wife af­ter bind­ing her to a chair with duct tape.

Blake ad­mit­ted he touched one of the knives and a pair of bloody gloves used dur­ing the at­tack af­ter un­wit­tingly be­ing in­serted into the crime by a mys­te­ri­ous stranger with “movie star white teeth” who hugged him and then of­fered him a free SUV at five in the morn­ing, which he ex­cit­edly but naively ac­cepted.

The knife and gloves were on the seat un­der a black Toronto Blue Jays toque match­ing the de­scrip­tion of the one the at­tacker wore, that Blake said he im­me­di­ately tried on af­ter climb­ing into his new ride.

But he couldn’t re­mem­ber his fin­gers ever be­com­ing wet or sticky from the blood that stained the blades, and def­i­nitely didn’t know how the blood of a vic­tim who picked him out of a photo lineup ended up stain­ing his T-shirt.

“What’s your ex­pla­na­tion for how that blood stain got there?” asked pros­e­cu­tor Meaghan Cun­ning­ham.

“I don’t really have one,” replied Blake.

Blake tes­ti­fied that it was all a big mis­take that he ended up on trial charged with at­tempted mur­der in the June 26, 2010, at­tack on François Re­naud and Amalle Thomas in their Rideout Cres­cent home.

He hadn’t done any­thing wrong, Blake said.

He took the free SUV from the stranger be­cause he wanted a car. He then planned a spur-of-the-moment, two­day trip to visit his mother in Camp­bell­ford, quickly fold­ing and pack­ing nine T-shirts, a long-sleeved shirt, two ex­tra pairs of jeans, sev­eral pairs of shorts and a foot­ball in a gym bag while the mys­tery stranger waited down­stairs for a ride.

When he came down, the stranger was gone, but the keys were on the hood. Blake de­cided to set out for home any­way. Blake said it didn’t oc­cur to him po­lice were try­ing to stop him when they at­tempted to box him in with their emer­gency lights flash­ing on Hwy. 417.

Blake con­fessed he was scared af­ter hit­ting one of the cruis­ers, so he drove across the grassy me­dian, went the other di­rec­tion on the high­way and aban­doned the car on an off-ramp near Sco­tia­bank Place.

“You tried to get away be­cause you be­lieved at that point you had mur­dered Amalle Thomas and you be­lieved you might spend the rest of your life in jail,” Cun­ning­ham sug­gested.

Blake dis­agreed. Blake said he ran be­cause that’s what his brain told him to do, but de­cided to stop when he re­al­ized he had no rea­son to run.

But the flies were bug­ging him, he said, so he climbed a tree to get away from the air­borne in­sects.

“I’m go­ing to sug­gest to you, you weren’t wait­ing for the po­lice, you were hid­ing from the po­lice,” said Cun­ning­ham.

Blake couldn’t ex­plain, though, how a pair of knives match­ing the bloody butcher knife ended up on top of his mi­crowave. Duct tape and Zip Ties also found in his home were there for work, he ex­plained.

“Are you sug­gest­ing the po­lice may have planted those knives there?” asked On­tario Su­pe­rior Court Jus­tice Al­bert Roy.

“I’m say­ing I’ve never seen those knives be­fore,” replied Blake.

The trial con­tin­ues Wed­nes­day.

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