HAMILTON — The accused killers of Tim Bosma, who vanished after going on a test drive with two strangers, committed numerous thefts together before stealing the Hamilton man’s truck, their murder trial heard Wednesday.
Mark Smich, 28, of Oakville, Ont., testified that he considered his co-accused Dellen Millard a brother and best friend.
Smich and Millard, 30, of Toronto, have pleaded not guilty in the death of Bosma, who vanished on May 6, 2013. His body was found more than a week later burned beyond recognition.
The Crown alleges Bosma was shot at point-blank range in his truck the same night he disappeared, and his body was later burned in an animal incinerator that police found on Millard’s farm near Waterloo, Ont.
Smich’s lawyer, Thomas Dungey, gave a brief opening address to the jury before his client took the stand.
“As it stands we don’t believe you have the full picture,” Dungey said. “He is going to tell you what he did on May 6 and May 7.”
Then Smich, wearing a red-collared shirt and khakis, walked up to the stand, ignoring Millard, who looked his old friend up and down and shook his head.
Smich said he first met Millard by selling him drugs and the two eventually became close.
“As time went on, our bond was stronger and I felt like he was a brother to me,” Smich told court.
“He was like family … kinda like a bigger brother.”
Smich said Millard invited him to steal a variety of items — including trees, trailers and machinery — for which he was paid in money, shoes and marijuana.
He performed a number of odd jobs at several of Millard’s properties, mostly manual labour, Smich said.
The Crown closed its case Monday after more than three months of presenting evidence from more than 90 witnesses.
Millard has decided not to testify in his own defence.
By Liam Casey, The Canadian Press