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Weapons shown at Legebokoff trial

Two weapons alleged to have been used by accused serial killer Cody Alan Legebokoff were shown Thursday to the jury hearing the trial . RCMP Cst.
Dr. Steven Symes on the steps of the Prince George Law Courts.

Two weapons alleged to have been used by accused serial killer Cody Alan Legebokoff were shown Thursday to the jury hearing the trial .

RCMP Cst. Dennis Engel brought to the court a pickaroon and an axe he found in Legebokoff's Liard Drive apartment during a search on Dec. 1, 2010. That was four days after the body of Loren Donn Leslie, 15, was found off Highway 27 north of Vanderhoof and Legebokoff was arrested.

Crown prosecution is alleging blood from Cynthia Frances Maas, 35, was found on the pickaroon, a tool similar to a pickaxe, and blood from Natasha Lynn Montgomery, 23, was found on the axe. Maas' body was found in L.C. Gunn Park on Oct. 9, 2010, about two months before Leslie's body was found, while the body of Montgomery, who was last seen on Sept. 1, 2010, has never been found.

Legebokoff, 24, is also accused of first degree murder in the death of Jill Stacey Stuchenko, 35, whose body was found in a gravel pit off Otway Road near Foothills Boulevard on Oct. 26, 2009.

Engel said he found the pickaroon in the master bedroom leaning against a wall behind a bedside table and that he could see the handle sticking out from behind the table. As presented to the court, the pickaroon had a standard-size single-pointed head and a handle appearing to be about a metre-and-a-half long.

Engel also said he was the RCMP officer who transported the pickaroon to Erie, Pennsylvania where it was examined by forensic anthropologist Dr. Stephen Symes, considered an expert in identifying tool marks on bones.

During testimony last week, Symes said he "could not rule out" the pickaroon as the cause of a hole found in Mass' right shoulder blade and said it was long enough to reach the spot from her front.

Engel said the axe, whose blade was also about average size and with a handle that appeared to be about a metre long, was found leaning against a wall in a coat and boot closet near the apartment's entrance and was seen upon opening the closet door.

Several other items were seized from the apartment, Engel said. They included a blue pillowcase found in a black suitcase in the apartment's storage room, a white and black hoody from a pile of clothes in the master bedroom, a light blue bed sheet found in a plastic garbage bag also in the master bedroom, a blue comforter from the master bedroom's bed, a cutout from a couch in the living room and a cutout of the carpet from in front of the master bedroom.

Swabs of DNA were also taken from the moulding on the bathroom door, the bottom of the linen closet, the front of the master bedroom door, the moulding behind the master bedroom door and the living room curtains, Engel said.

Crown prosecution is alleging Montgomery's blood was found on most of those items, as well on 32 swabs taken from the apartment. Stuchenko's blood was found on the couch, which Legebokoff took with him after moving from a basement suite in the 1000 block of Carney Street, the Crown also alleges.

Engel testified he also led a two-day search of the area where Leslie's body was found about a week after the discovery with the help of about 20 Vanderhoof Search and Rescue volunteers equipped with metal detectors. Engel presented a pair of black-rimmed glasses and a gold-coloured ring found at the scene and said there was blood in the snow where the two items were uncovered a short distance from each other.

As of Thursday, the court has heard from 22 witnesses and 52 exhibits have been entered as evidence. The trial resumes Monday at the Prince George courthouse, 9:30 a.m. start.

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