Undercover officer questioned suspect on criminal activity before introduction to crime boss
By Glynn Brothen
(JENNIFER STAHN / iNFOnews.ca)
November 18, 2014 - 6:22 PM
"I KNOW YOU KILLED HER"
GRAPHIC LANGUAGE/SUBJECT MATTER
KAMLOOPS – A jury heard recorded discussions between an undercover police officer posing as a criminal, who encouraged a murder suspect to speak to his fake crime boss about the murder of his girlfriend in Supreme Court Tuesday afternoon.
The target was Robert Donald Balbar, who is being tried with second-degree murder in the death of his girlfriend, Heather Hamill. Balbar told the undercover police officer he beat Hamill to death and disposed of her body along with evidence of her death in the Thompson River.
The undercover police officer, who cannot be named by law, met Balbar in 2007 when the undercover sting began. Over the course of their day-to-day interactions, the officer hired and paid Balbar for odd jobs.
The undercover operation is commonly referred to as a “Mr. Big” sting. An officer targets a suspect, befriends him and offers him work as part of a criminal organization before introducing him to a Mr. Big—the crime boss. The goal of the sting is for the accused to make a confession to criminal activity to the boss who is also an undercover operator.
Court has heard recordings of Balbar confessing to the crime boss that he killed his girlfriend with three different hammers. But before he could meet the boss, Balbar had to earn the trust of his newly-made friend.
“Are you a... rat?” the officer asked.
“Nah, I’m not a rat,” Balbar replied.
“Is there... heat on you?” the officer asked.
“They’re trying to charge me for killing a bunch of people... my (girlfriend) got whacked or something.... I fuckin’ whacked her upside the head with a hammer,” he added with a laugh.
The officer commented on the victim, called her several derogatory terms and said her death wouldn’t matter as long as she wasn’t “connected.” He accused Balbar of trying to look tough by confessing to several murders. Balbar said the only death that got him “heat” was his girlfriend’s.
“They (police) got no evidence,” Balbar said adding the only person who may have witnessed the event was his eight-year-old son.
Following Balbar’s alleged confession to the undercover officer, the two took a trip to Kamloops where the vehicle they travelled in was pulled over by police for a staged scenario which was recorded.
“Keep your... mouth shut,” the undercover officer said to Balbar before police approached the window.
“(Balbar), we’ve been looking for you for a while,” said the officer handing out the ticket. He told Balbar Heather Hamill’s file was re-opened and that police would like to speak with him at the detachment.
“I know you killed her,” the officer said.
“Is he under arrest?” the undercover officer asked. “You’re not... going anywhere,” he said to Balbar.
The two departed the scene and the undercover officer accused Balbar of not hiding the murder well enough.
“You’re sitting on... heat,” he said. “We gotta take care of this. I didn’t know it was this... bad. We gotta go to the big guy.”
Later on, the undercover officer said he and Balbar travelled to different places in Kamloops to map out locations Balbar identified as related to Hamill’s death. The undercover officer later relayed those details to RCMP investigators.
The trial will continue Wednesday morning.
To contact a reporter for this story, email Glynn Brothen at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 250-319-7494. To contact an editor, email email@example.com or call 250-718-2724.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014