Prad trial Day 5

Forensic pathologist takes the stand

  • Nov. 28, 2016 6:00 p.m.

Erin Haluschak

Record Staff

Multiple wide-spread injures ultimately led to Comox Valley teacher and cyclist Paul Bally’s death, testified Dr. Matthew Orde Monday, a forensic pathologist, and expert considered in the trial of Timothy Prad.

Prad, 57, pleaded not guilty to dangerous driving causing death, and failure to stop at an accident causing bodily harm in the Dec. 15, 2014 incident in which Bally was struck by a southbound vehicle on Highway 19A near Curran Road in Fanny Bay.

Orde was one of two doctors who prepared an autopsy report on Bally at Vancouver General Hospital Dec. 18, 2014.

While Orde said Bally suffered from a severe head injury which rendered him unconscious, “… it was (all) injuries that led to his ultimate demise,” he testified in day five of the eight-day provincial court trial.

Referencing his autopsy report, Orde noted Bally would have been rendered unconscious at the time of his injury, and death occurred shortly afterwards.

He said Bally suffered extensive injuries to his head and face, including a fracture to his eye socket and bleeding to the brain.

The Bally family was present in court during the testimony, and Paul’s wife Evelyn, struggled to hold back tears during the description of the autopsy findings.

When asked by Crown attorney John Boccabella about the sites of the injury – specifically to Bally’s upper neck/spine area, Orde explained the neck injury often occurs from a “whiplash-type effect.”

There were two fractures to his backbone, and his spinal bone “seemed to be unhinged,” he said.

There is evidence to suggest the impact was at his back, he added, as there were “injuries across the whole of the lower back.

“It is consistent with Mr. Bally riding a bike (who) was struck from behind causing a dent of the hood (of the vehicle), and the back of the hood.”

Orde noted he believes the back/buttocks area of Bally was stuck first, with his upper body “being flung back and his chest impacting the back part of the hood.”

Sgt. Charles Duncan, a forensic identification officer, took the stand in the afternoon, as Crown re-opened the initial voir dire – a series of videos created by the Comox Valley RCMP and Const. Jonathan Grabb to re-create the scene the night of the incident.

Judge Peter Doherty will determine the admissibility of the videos as evidence in the in-trial hearing separate from the trial itself.

Duncan noted he was in the vehicle filming the videos directly behind Grabb, who was driving.

“I was somewhat disappointed in the video – the clarity in the video wasn’t as clear as what I viewed through the windshield. The video has difficulties in focusing.”

The trial is set to conclude this week.

 

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