Grace Robotti didn't call an ambulance because she was 'pretty sure' Roxanne Louie was dead - InfoNews

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Grace Robotti didn't call an ambulance because she was 'pretty sure' Roxanne Louie was dead

March 31, 2017 - 2:29 PM

KELOWNA – Accused murderer Grace Robotti admitted in court she wasn’t completely certain Roxanne Louie was dead when she and her brother decided not to call an ambulance.

“I was pretty sure she was (dead), I hoped (she wasn’t), but I was certain she was,” Robotti said from the stand on her second day testifying in her own defence against second-degree murder charges. “I was pretty sure she was.”

Robotti admits she has no medical training and relied on her own clumsy efforts to check Louie’s pulse, in the dark, moments after Robotti struck her at least 26 times with a metal bar.

She does not remember checking for breath sounds or feeling her chest for movement but says she vaguely remembers her brother Pier also checking for a pulse.

Louie died in the early morning hours of Jan. 4, 2015 in Penticton after a fight with Robotti, her son’s great-grandmother and part-time caregiver. Robotti admits causing Louie’s death but denies she intended to kill her.

In the hours and days after the death, Grace helped Pier dump the body near Naramata, bagged her belongings and discarded them in several different dumpsters, texted Louie knowing she was dead, lied to family, friends and police and filed a missing person report.

She says she did it not to avoid being caught but to buy time in order to arrange suitable care for Louie’s three-year-old son.

“There was nothing I could do about Roxanne, but there was still something I could do about (her son).”

Robotti testified yesterday, March 30, that based on Roxanne’s upbringing she did not want the boy left in the car of Louie’s mother. This, she says, is the only reason she delayed going to the police.

“I just wanted a few days to get things settled. Collect my thoughts,” she said in Kelowna Supreme Court today, March 31.

This proved more difficult than she thought.

“Every time somebody asked I had to figure out what to say,” she said. “That was the whole part of the cover up to set it up so I could just get some time. That’s all it was. It was part of a whole series of things.”

That “series of things” included scrubbing evidence from her home and wrapping Louie’s body in garbage bags.

Robotti testified that she first slipped a garbage bag over Louie’s head, then another over her feet and legs.

“I was looking away,” she said. “I didn’t want to look at her. I didn’t want to see her. I just wanted to cover her as much as possible.”

Robotti then convinced her brother, Pier Robotti, to take the body to a forestry road near Naramata and dump it.

Grace maintains she planned to confess to police eventually but Crown prosecutor John Swanson suggested she hoped the body would never be found so she could raise Louie’s son herself.

“No, I could not have lived with something like that,” she repeated several times. “This was a cover up. I’m not denying that. I’m just saying, for some crazy reason, I thought that’s what I had to do. I would do it differently now. I started on that and I… didn’t think about it.”

"I would have done it differently, I wouldn’t have done any of that. That was hard. That was hard to do.”

Both Pier and Grace Robotti were arrested at the Penticton RCMP detachment Jan. 11 after Pier told a couple what had happened.

The arrest happened moments after a meeting between the couple and RCMP.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Adam Proskiw or call 250-718-0428 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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