NEWS

Millard Air hangar contained stolen vehicles, police say

05/30/2013 09:02 EDT | Updated 07/30/2013 05:12 EDT
Parts from stolen vehicles have been found in an airplane hangar owned by Dellen Millard, the Toronto man charged in the slaying of Hamilton's Tim Bosma.

Police said they have recovered parts of a stolen 2010 Harley-Davidson in the Millard Air hangar at Waterloo Regional Airport, just outside of Kitchener, Ont.

“The Hamilton police BEAR [break, enter, auto theft and robbery] Unit did recover parts of the stolen motorcycle in the hangar and have returned those parts to the owner,” said Hamilton police spokesperson Debbie MacGreal-Dinning in an email. She said there were also parts from other stolen vehicles found.

“There were a number of vehicles and/or parts found in the hangar and this remains under investigation with the Hamilton police.”

Police downplay Millard boat link

Meanwhile, the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) downplayed possible links between Millard and a Manitoulan Island boat.

The operator of a boat charter service on the island in northern Ontario told a local newspaper he spoke to police about blood found on a boat chartered by Millard.

Chris Blodgett, owner of Discovery Yacht Charters, said Millard rented a boat from him two years ago for a cruise off Manitoulin Island.

Blodgett said that during that boat trip, Millard had a mechanical problem and called him for assistance. After Blodgett showed up to fix the problem, he noticed blood in the boat.

Blodgett told the Manitoulin Expositor that Millard initially left on the 10-day cruise with one woman and that at some point during the cruise, he took her back to shore and took another woman out on the boat.

Blodgett contacted police two weeks ago when news broke of Millard’s arrest. News photos of Millard sporting a red Mohawk haircut triggered Blodget's memory, prompting him to call police.

Blodgett was contacted by CBC News on Wednesday and confirmed the details of the Manitoulin Expositor story.

He also emphasized that the boat did not resemble a murder scene, which is why he didn't see any reason to call police at the time.

The OPP said late Thursday afternoon that their Manitoulin detachment has now completed their investigation of the boat.

"The results of the investigation are that the concerns brought forth by the owner of Discovery Yacht Charters, Mr. Christopher Blodgett, are unfounded," police said.

Millard's lawyer said neither he nor his client has been contacted about a Manitoulin investigation.

2 charged, another sought in Bosma killing

Millard, 27, was charged with first-degree murder on May 15 in connection with the death of Bosma. The 32-year-old's charred remains were found on Millard’s farm near Cambridge, Ont., days after he disappeared while taking two strangers on a test drive of a pickup truck he had advertised online for sale.

Bosma, his wife and two-year-old daughter lived in the Hamilton community of Ancaster.

A second man, 25-year-old Mark Smich of Oakville, Ont., was arrested on May 22 and has also been charged with first-degree murder in Bosma's death. A third suspect is still being sought by police.

Investigators are also looking into the disappearance of Laura Babcock, 23, who has been missing since June 2012. According to friends of the Toronto woman, she was once in a relationship with Millard.

Police are also taking a second look into the suicide of Millard's father, Wayne, who died last year.

Police return to Millard's Cambridge-area farm

In another development, members of both the Toronto police and OPP were back at Millard's North Dumfries farm on Thursday, and appeared to be digging on the property.

An excavator was brought in, on a trailer attached to an unmarked black SUV, to the farm at 2548 Roseville Rd. The CBC's Colin Butler spotted the excavator digging on the property.

Butler was told by a detective acting as liaison for Waterloo Regional Police that police will likely wrap up their search of the Millard farm Thursday.

On the site are multiple police vehicles, including a Toronto police Forensic Indentification Services SUV, a large unmarked white utility truck and two unmarked OPP vans.

Toronto homicide unit Staff Insp. Greg McLane confirmed on Tuesday that police were executing a search warrant in connection with the disappearance of Babcock and the suicide of Wayne Millard.

McLane said they were following up on recent information that led them to search the farm, the second time police have done so since the Bosma slaying.

Fresh piles of dirt were spotted at the farm Tuesday, and police officers were seen raking and cutting back tall grass with a weed trimmer on the property.

Officers were also observed with a ground-penetrating radar device that is commonly used to find underground objects.

Operations at the farm were suspended on Wednesday because of predictions of severe thunderstorms in the region.

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