Seven months after teenager Omar Wellington was savagely beaten, then fatally stabbed, Toronto police released a composite photo of a suspect and the knife purportedly wielded by the killer.
The evidence was fabricated and part of an eleborate police strategy to solve the shocking July 2006 murder in Flemingdon Park.
Several intercepted calls, made after the fictitious details were made public, were played for a Superior Court jury Friday before the Crown closed its case against J.G.
The Crown alleges he plunged a knife into Wellington 31 times after a group of youths kicked, punched and stomped on the 17-year-old for hours after he failed to deliver a promised handgun.
J.G., who has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder, was under 18 when Wellington was killed so cannot be identified under the Youth Criminal Justice Act.
Jurors heard a Feb. 18, 2007, police wiretap between J.G. and another male, recorded days after then homicide Det. Scott Spratt told a news conference police were closing in and had recovered the murder weapon at the scene.
Crown Attorney Anna Tenhouse asked Spratt about some of the language used by J.G. and his friend. “Eye and eye,” for example, referred to police, Spratt said.
At another point in the call, the male asks J.G. “about the real crucial boop.”
“That wasn’t even the one, two, guy,” J.G. responds.
“That wasn’t the one, two?”
“Nah, That’s what I’m trying to say. That wasn’t – that wasn’t even part of anything . . . That’s so . . . so when they said it’s a, it’s a, it’s a match made in heaven, what the f--- are they talking about?”
Defence lawyer Adam Schultz told court he would call no evidence.
J.G., arrested Oct. 27, 2008, is the last person to stand trial in the case. Four other males, also teens at the time, were convicted of assault and aggravated assault. A fifth male pleaded guilty to first-degree murder for aiding and encouraging the murder.
Justice Mary Lou Benotto told the jury to return to court Tuesday when closing arguments are expected.