Defence suggests ‘rough sex’ in Kamloops murder trial | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Defence suggests ‘rough sex’ in Kamloops murder trial

Image Credit: Cliff MacArthur/
February 05, 2020 - 5:24 PM


The defence lawyer for a Abbotsford man charged with the first-degree murder of a 52-year-old woman whose body was found in a Kamloops motel room in August 2016 suggested her death may have been caused by dangerous sexual interests.

David Albert Miller was arrested in connection with the death of Debra Novacluse after she was found in her underwear wrapped in a sleeping bag under a blood-stained mattress in a Super 8 motel nearly four years ago.

READ MORE:Victim in Kamloops motel murder died from blunt force trauma, strangulation

Court heard today, Feb. 5, about the extent of Novacluse’s injuries from a forensic pathologist. Dr. Lisa Steele testified Novacluse died from multiple injuries caused by blunt force trauma and strangulation.

Some of Novacluse’s injuries included fractured ribs, extensive bruising around her neck and head area, swelling in her brain and vaginal tearing that was likely caused by a large object.

During defence lawyer Jim Heller's cross-examination of Dr. Steele, he suggested the possibility that rough sex may have caused Novacluse’s injuries.

“That horrible vaginal tearing, that is not going to come from regular heterosexual sex,” Heller said, suggesting to Steele the injury may have been caused by a fist or a large sex toy.

A toxicology report revealed Novacluse was severely intoxicated. Steele said alcohol could either lower or increase a person’s pain threshold.

However,  Steele said the vaginal tear Novacluse sustained was not injury that caused her death.

Heller also asked if there were any defensive wounds on Novacluse. Steele said there was bruising on her forearms which may have been caused by a variety of things but could have been caused by her trying to protect her head in the course of a beating.

Crown counsel is expected to continue their case tomorrow, Feb. 6. Defence counsel hasn't said whether or note they will present evidence.

For past stories on this case, go here.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Karen Edwards or call (250) 819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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