“Kill her” scrawled in notebook at accused killer’s home
February 20, 2013
Inside a townhouse where police believed Samantha Collins’ accused killer was living, an officer came across two chilling words scrawled in a notebook.
Former Detective Sgt. Joseph Lucas testified last week that he came across the brown, pocket-sized notebook while executing a search warrant at an Orillia townhouse on May 3, 2011. The now-retired cop had co-ordinated the search, and said the residence – located near Highway 11 and Coldwater Road – was empty when officers entered.
“I did most of my searching in the kitchen of the residence,” he told the court.
About half an hour after starting his search there, Lucas testified that that he found the notebook on top of the fridge with a hat piled on top of it. He then went on to expand his search to the living room next to the kitchen.
“At 1:52 p.m., I seized an empty box from the top left shelf in the closet in the living room,” he said.
The box, he said, was for a Ridgid multi-tool starter kit. The handheld tool can be used for craftsman’s tasks like sanding or cutting.
Ian Charles Borbely, who was arrested and charged with Collins’ murder the same day, sat emotionless in the courtroom during Lucas’ testimony. He was raising a child he had with the 29-year-old Bracebridge woman up until 2007, when Collins disappeared.
The child’s name is currently under a publication ban.
Collins’ remains surfaced three years later at a Merrick Drive cottage in Bracebridge where Borbely was working as a contractor. She had been dismembered and placed into four plastic pails.
In their search of the Orillia home, police also took apart a bed, and at least one computer was also seized.
Defense attorney Paul Cooper, however, was not convinced the chilling words Lucas found were incriminating. Cooper suggested the notebook’s content could have been created by “different authors.”
The jury was shown different pages of the notebook. One page had what appeared to be a series of birthdays scrawled on it. Others contained nonsensical scribbles. Yet another page had a crudely-drawn doodle of what appears to be a robot.
The number “7” on one page was shown to have been written with a horizontal strike through the character. But the same distinguishing characteristic does not appear to show up when the same number was written elsewhere in the notebook.
Upon Cooper’s questioning, Lucas said three young children – one of whom was the child Borbely shared with Collins – were living in the residence. All were under the age of 10.
Cooper questioned whether Lucas was able to detect any consistency in the style of handwriting within the notebook.
“You’re not an expert in handwriting or anything like that?” he asked Lucas.
Lucas testified that he was not.
Cooper also questioned if the notebook was difficult to find.
“It actually wasn’t hidden,” Lucas said.
The court heard Borbely’s parents were OPP employees, though it has not been revealed in what capacity they were working. Cooper pointed out that in one photo police took of the notebook, it was situated “within 10 inches” of what looks like an OPP business card.
He then pointed to another photo taken of a calendar in the back of the notebook, which showed the year as 2010 – three years after police believe Collins died.
Under questioning from Crown attorney Douglas Kasko, OPP Const Dan Hale – who took the photo of the notebook – said he had also taken photos of various documents that Revenue Canada had mailed to Borbely. The documents showed Borbely attempted to get payments from the Canada Child Tax Benefit, but that he was ultimately turned down.
The trial continues this week. For continuing updates, please see this newspaper or visit cottagecountrynow.ca.
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