Pirko tells investigators he killed Chris Ausman - InfoNews

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Pirko tells investigators he killed Chris Ausman

Steve Pirko is charged with the murder of Chris Ausman, who was found dead on a Rutland street in January, 2014.
May 15, 2019 - 4:17 PM


KELOWNA - Steven Pirko broke down in tears Nov. 19, 2016 and after hours of denial, confessed to killing Christopher Ausman nearly three years earlier.

“I hit him. I hit him with the fucking hammer. I didn’t mean to fucking kill him. I didn’t mean to kill him,” jurors heard Pirko say Wednesday as a recording of his interrogation was played.

His words tumbled out quickly and were almost unintelligible. With time, and a little more prodding, Pirko tells Cpl. Eric Boucher and Cpl. Shane O’Rouric that he and his longtime friend Elrich Dyck were drunk and walking down Highway 33, near the 7-Eleven, Jan. 25, 2014 when the fatal interaction took place.

“(Dyck) was egging people on… I was trying to push him back, he was trying to egg on everybody,” Pirko said.

“I wasn’t trying to fight anybody, then somebody comes up and rushes him… I didn’t mean to kill the guy.”

Pirko said he didn’t know Ausman. In fact, he didn’t remember what he looked liked and had gone to great lengths to avoid the media coverage that followed his death.

The act weighed on him in the years that passed, and he tried to kill himself three times as a result, he said. He also expressed frustration that he may have to spend his life in jail for what he claims was protecting a friend.

Pirko told the officers that when Ausman ran across the street that night, he immediately grabbed Dyck by the collar and started punching him in the head.

“He was holding him and hitting him, hitting him, hitting him,” Pirko said. 

He tried to get Ausman to back off and hit him in the leg with the hammer he’d been carrying for protection, but it made no difference.

“He didn’t go down, he was a fucking tank,” Pirko said.

Then, Pirko said, Dyck told him to hit Ausman in the head.

He remembers swinging at him between two to three times, and Ausman went down “like a starfish.”

Elrich, he claimed, took the moment to get on top of Ausman, punched him in the face at least two times and then they ran and Pirko ditched the hammer.

Pirko, who is charged with Ausman's second degree murder, and Elrich who was not charged, had long been suspects in the murder. 

There are several more weeks left in the trial and Crown counsel David Grabavac said he'd likely call up to 22 witnesses. He's interviewed 13, thus far.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Kathy Michaels 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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