ALBERTA

Bunty Loose Trial: Jurors Shown Photos Of Headless, Handless Body

10/09/2014 11:30 EDT | Updated 12/09/2014 05:59 EST
RCMP
LETHBRIDGE, Alta. - Photos of an elderly victim's naked and bruised body — missing a head and both hands — have been shown to jurors at the trial of Tim Engel, who is charged with first-degree murder in the gruesome death.

Court was told the remains of Otto (Bunty) Loose, 77, were found in the snow in the woods west of Bragg Creek, Alta., in January 2012.

An RCMP officer has previously testified Loose's head was found several kilometres away.

Forensic specialist Heidi Godden told court Thursday that she was called in to search Loose's car, which was found abandoned in Calgary, and found both blood and flesh samples.

Loose's daughter, Lavonda Justinick, took the stand and testified her father suffered from dementia and that he was too trusting and easily led.

She acknowledged that they had an estranged relationship and that Loose had been to jail more than once because of a stalking issue, which she attributed to the dementia.

The Crown contends Engel confessed to undercover officers, asked them to help him dispose of evidence and even provided specific details as to where he left the body after dismembering it.

The Crown has also acknowledged Engel later recanted, saying another man did it and that he was just pulled along.

Before he was charged, Engel was arrested for a breach of previous release conditions and police put an undercover officer in his cell posing as someone there for unpaid fines.

That officer, whose name is protected by a publication ban, testified Thursday that Engel said very little during most of their time together but started crying while talking about working to support his pregnant girlfriend and wanting to see his son born.

The officer said Engel talked a little about Loose, saying he saw him just before he went missing and that Loose had given him a cheque for $10,000.

The officer said what got his attention was when Engel said, "I know I never touched him," and went on to talk about how much he knew about police forensic capabilities.

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