NEWS
11/17/2017 08:50 EST | Updated 11/17/2017 11:21 EST

Smoke, crackling sound coming from incinerator in 2012, Smich's ex tells Babcock trial

TORONTO — The ex-girlfriend of one of two men accused of murdering a young Toronto woman and burning her remains in a massive animal incinerator says she once saw the large piece of equipment in action.

But Marlena Meneses has told a court she was ordered not to pay attention as Dellen Millard and Mark Smich worked with the device known as The Eliminator at a hangar owned by Millard in Waterloo, Ont.

She says Smich, her boyfriend at the time, told her to leave Millard's hangar late one night five years ago, but she returned and saw smoke billowing out of the incinerator and heard a crackling sound.

Millard, 32, of Toronto, and Smich, 30, of Oakville, Ont., have pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder in the death of Laura Babcock, who disappeared in the summer of 2012.

Crown prosecutors allege Millard and Smich killed 23-year-old Babcock because she was the odd woman out in a love triangle with Millard and his girlfriend.

Babcock's body has not been found.