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Bosma trial: Millard's ex wiped fingerprints from trailer on night of his arrest
The former girlfriend of Dellen Millard, one of the men accused of killing Tim Bosma, testified on Thursday that she cleaned her fingerprints off a piece of evidence after finding out about her ex-boyfriend’s arrest hours earlier.
Christina Noudga testified in a Hamilton, Ont. courtroom on Thursday that, after her ex-boyfriend Dellen Millard was charged with forcible confinement and theft, she wiped her prints off a trailer she helped park at his mother's home in Kleinberg, Ont.
Police have testified that they found Bosma's missing truck in the trailer at the home after receiving a report about a "suspicious trailer" that might be related to the case.
Millard, 30, of Toronto, and Mark Smich, 28, of Oakville, Ont., have pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder in the death of Bosma.
Under questioning from the Crown on Thursday, Noudga told the jury about the events of May 10, 2013 – the day Millard was arrested in connection with Bosma’s disappearance.
On the night of Millard's arrest, Noudga said she went to his mother's home and the pair booked a hotel room in anticipation of a flurry of media attention.
Upon arrival at the hotel room, they opened a bottle of wine and discussed Millard's arrest.
"We get back to the hotel, open up a bottle of wine and we start brainstorming -- what's in the trailer? What's he in trouble for?"
"It led us to believe the truck was in the trailer," Noudga told court.
Noudga told the court Wednesday that she was with Millard when he drove the trailer that police said held Bosma’s pickup truck, to his mother’s house the night before. She claimed she didn’t know what was inside the trailer at the time.
In the hotel room, Noudga and Madeleine Burns, Millard's mother, realized that they had both touched the trailer.
"We kind of sit there," Noudga told the court Thursday. "Should we go back? Should we do something? Both of us said 'Yeah, let's wipe down the areas we touched."'
"And that's exactly what happened."
Noudga said the pair proceeded to drive back to Burns' home in the middle of the night, put on dish gloves and clean the outside of trailer in hopes of removing any fingerprints.
After that, they went back to the hotel and drank "copious amounts of wine."
"Did you have any concerns about your involvement?" Crown attorney Tony Leitch asked Noudga.
"My biggest concern was we touched the trailer and we're going to get thrown into this entire mess," she replied.
Noudga also told the court that Millard asked her to tamper with evidence in a series of letters they exchanged while he was in jail awaiting trial.
In one of the letters, Millard, who admitted in court to being the author, asks Noudga to attempt to convince one of his friends, Andrew Michalski, to backtrack on his statement to police.
"He was obviously asking me to tamper with evidence and testimony in order to protect him," Noudga told the court.
She added that she considered fulfilling Millard's request, but never went ended up following through.
Michalski had previously told the court that he had heard Millard and Smich making plans to steal a pickup truck.
"Andrew (Michalski) needs to say I showed him a picture of a truck and asked who's I should BUY," Millard said in a letter to Noudga.
"That he changed it to steal because before the interrogation began, cops told him they wanted to hear about the planning of a truck robbery and he wasn't going home until he told them what they wanted to hear."
Other written exchanges between the former couple also show Millard trying to get Noudga to speak to Michalski.
In another letter, Millard blamed Smich for Bosma's death.
"It was Mark (Smich) who f--ked up a truck robbery, not me," Millard wrote.
"And just because I helped clean up Mark's mess, does not mean I should also pay for it."
Many of the letters also end with Millard asking Noudga to destroy them.
But she told the court she kept them because she was in love with him. Noudga added that she never considered giving the letters to police.
"Now I realize that was a stupid thing to do," she told the court.
"I agree now it would have helped police."
Millard also wrote that he would help get Michalski a lawyer if he would change his story.
In another excerpt, Millard thanked Noudga for keeping quiet and raged against Smich's supposed betrayal.
"And treacherous Mark got himself charged by trying to put it on me. These are the most lethal pieces currently played against me," Millard wrote.
"Anyways, I'm absorbing it all; learning. Strategizing, evolving. I've had a lot of time for self-reflection ... there are many things I would do differently."
Earlier on Thursday, Noudga told the court she spent the morning with Millard on the day of his arrest before he went to Waterloo, Ont.
Noudga testified that Millard was supposed to pick her up that evening. When she didn’t hear from him all day long, she became nervous.
She phoned Millard’s co-accused Smich when she couldn’t get in contact with her boyfriend later that day. Smich told her that “s—t went down," but assured her that everything was OK.
Noudga said Smich didn’t give her any more information.
This is the second day of testimony for Noudga, who was charged in 2014 with accessory after the fact to the murder in connection to Bosma’s death. Her trial is set to begin in November.
Under questioning on Wednesday, Noudga told the court about the nature of her relationship with Millard, and described helping him move his incinerator from his barn in the days after Bosma went missing.
She claimed Millard told her he used the incinerator to burn scrap metal.
The Crown believes Bosma was shot and killed at close-range.
On Thursday, Noudga also testified that she went along with Millard when he dropped off a toolbox that the Crown believes contained a gun that killed Bosma. Noudga said that she thought the toolbox contained drugs.
The jury has previously heard that the toolbox was eventually found with traces of gun powder but no gun.
None of the allegations have been proven in court.
Bosma, a 32-year-old husband and father of one went missing from his Ancaster home on May 6, 2013, after taking two strangers on a test driver of a pickup truck he was trying to sell.
With reports from CTV Toronto, CTV Kitchener and The Canadian Press