The manslaughter trial of Osoyoos resident Roderick Flavell got underway in Penticton Supreme Court on Monday.
According to Crown counsel’s opening statements, on April 8, 2020, Flavell called 911 and indicated he and his spouse Tina Seminara had a major fight and his wife required medical attention. RCMP and emergency responders went to the couple’s home and found Seminara, 61, on the living room floor in critical condition and unresponsive.
She was rushed to Oliver hospital and later to Kelowna General Hospital where she succumbed to her injuries nine days later. Flavell was originally charged with aggravated assault, but the charge was upgraded to manslaughter after his wife died. Shortly after being charged with manslaughter, Flavell was released on bail where he has remained.
The trial is expected to take up to three weeks. Flavell has pleaded not guilty and is being tried by judge alone.
Crown laid out its case including what witnesses they are going to call, which includes the police officers who took Flavell into custody, paramedics and doctors who attended to Seminara, neighbours and the pathologist who is expected to testify that Seminara died of brain damage caused by oxygen deprivation.
On the night of the incident, Const. Sidhu was working at the Osoyoos detachment when dispatch notified him that a man was at the front door of the police station. Sidhu met that man at the door and testified that it was Flavell. The accused asked Const. Sidhu if the police had gone to his residence yet because ‘his wife was in bad shape.’
At that time, Sidhu said he observed Mr. Flavell had stains on his t-shirt appearing to look like blood.
In opening statements, Crown said the blood on the shirt was tested and found to contain both Flavell’s and Seminara’s blood.
Const. Sidhu testified that he arrested Flavell for assault on his wife and placed him in handcuffs. He observed cuts on both his wrists. His clothing was taken for evidence and Sidhu observed that the t-shirt smelled of alcohol.
Crown asked what Flavell’s demeanour was and Sidhu said that “he appeared very calm, monotone.”
Defence asked if Sidhu observed any blood under his fingernails or on his hands, to which Sidhu said he didn’t. Sidhu photographed Flavell and his clothing.
Osoyoos RCMP Const. Robinson also testified on Monday. He attended Flavell’s home on that night. He observed that Seminara’s face was swollen and her cheek had discoloured.
More to come.
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