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Ex-lover of Toronto pastor accused of murder testifies at trial

11/19/2014 09:02 EST | Updated 01/19/2015 05:59 EST
The former lover of an ex-Toronto pastor accused of killing his pregnant wife testified at his trial Wednesday.

Elaine Florentino, 36, told the court that her relationship with ex-Baptist pastor Philip Grandine began after she confided in him about some personal problems.

The affair began several months before his 29-year-old wife, Karissa Grandine, drowned in the couple’s bath tub in Scarborough in October 2011. She was five months pregnant at the time.

Grandine was arrested six months later and it was revealed that investigators had discovered Karissa’s blood contained the sedative drug Lorazepam, which had not been prescribed to her.

The prosecution alleges that Grandine murdered his wife so he could continue his relationship with Florentino.

Grandine told police he found his wife unconscious in the bathtub after returning from a jog. When paramedics arrived at the scene on the night of Oct. 17, Karissa was allegedly still in the tub and the water had not been drained. She would later die in hospital.

Florentino said Wednesday that she had sex with Grandine in the days leading up to his wife’s funeral, and that several times over the duration of their relationship Grandine joked about running away together. The pair continued to sleep together in the months following the funeral, until January 2012.

She also testified that before her death, Karissa sent her a message on Facebook saying that she knew about the affair.

Florentino said that while Grandine mentioned running away together, he never once said he wanted to harm his wife.

The court also heard a dramatic, 10-minute long recording of the 911 call Grandine made to police that night.

The Crown is expected to continue its case on Thursday. 

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