Brown jacket introduced as evidence at Dennis Oland's retrial
Crown prosecutors introduced a key piece of evidence Tuesday at the Dennis Oland murder trial.
A brown jacket seized from the Oland home is now an exhibit, as the trial heard from the officer who seized it and details on what he found on the piece of clothing.
The jacket was seized by the Saint John Police Force one week after the murder of Richard Oland, Dennis Oland’s father.
Saint John police obtained a warrant to search Dennis Oland's home and were looking for specific items including:
- The brown sports jacket
- A navy blue sports jacket
- Dress shoes
- Dennis Oland's cell phone
- And Richard Oland's cell phone, which was never found.
Const. David MacDonald was the so-called “seizing officer.” He also took a series of photos inside the Oland home, including inside a closet, where police discovered one of their top targets.
When the brown jacket was found inside the closet, MacDonald took possession of it as seizing officer, but not before another police officer had grabbed the jacket with his bare hand.
Prosecutor Jill Knee asked: “Is that normal?”
To which MacDonald replied: “No.”
Defence lawyer Alan Gold is expected to question MacDonald in depth Wednesday about police handling of that jacket.
When MacDonald began examining the clothing he had seized, the brown jacket was not on the top of the list.
He told the court: “There was a dry cleaning tag attached to it."
For police, that potentially reduced the value of the jacket.
“Because I saw that some of the clothing had been dry-cleaned, I decided to start with the shoes.”
Nothing of value was found on the shoes.
About four months later, he took a close look at the jacket under bright lights and he "began to see red colours stand out on the elbow,” MacDonald told the court.
Other areas of the jacket were scrutinized. Upcoming witnesses will testify about evidence linking the jacket to the crime scene.
MacDonald also used a warrant to seize a sample of Dennis Oland's DNA in May of 2013, almost two years after the murder.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Mike Cameron.