Grieving mother recounts confrontation with predator
Published Friday, November 2, 2012 7:44PM PDT
Last Updated Friday, November 2, 2012 8:09PM PDT
The grieving stepmother of Martha Jackson Hernandez took the stand Friday and recounted her emotional confrontation with the convicted sexual predator charged in her daughter’s death.
Connie Hernandez testified in B.C. Supreme Court that she and her husband visited the Richmond home of Martin Tremblay in March 2010, just days after authorities believe her 17-year-old stepdaughter ingested a lethal dose of alcohol and drugs inside.
“I told him we were Martha’s parents and we wanted to know what happened,” she told the court. “He asked us to come in.”
Hernandez and her husband entered the home, where Tremblay – a man in his mid-40s – allegedly pointed to the spot where Martha died.
“He said that she went into cardiac arrest. [He said] he tried resuscitating her.”
She claims Tremblay admitted Martha was drunk at his house, and had done multiple drugs – including MDMA – on his kitchen table.
But the five-time sex offender denied providing alcohol or drugs to their daughter. When the couple pressed for more details, his hospitality waned.
“The more I asked him about how Martha passed, he started stuttering. I asked him why he was so nervous. He told us to get out,” Hernandez testified.
Tremblay has been charged with two counts each of criminal negligence causing death, obstruction of justice and failure to provide necessities in both Jackson Hernandez’s death and the death of 16-year-old Kayla LaLonde.
Crown prosecutors believe both girls had been partying at Tremblay’s home the night of March 2, 2010, and that he shirked his responsibility to help them even after they vomited and passed out.
LaLonde’s mother Angela told CTV News Friday that she can barely stand to watch Tremblay’s trial.
“He’s an evil man, you know. Very evil. And I hope he gets what he deserves,” LaLonde said.
Authorities believe Kayla LaLonde went into medical distress inside Tremblay’s home first, and that instead of calling 911 the accused contacted a friend to help him drive the unconscious girl to Burnaby and dump her there.
She went into cardiac arrest at around 12:40 a.m. in the 4000-block of rumble Street. Two Good Samaritans and paramedics tried unsuccessfully to revive her.
When Tremblay returned, the Crown alleges he failed to check on Jackson Hernandez and instead left to take a third girl to Tim Hortons.
An older woman is believed to have called 911 for Connie Hernandez’s stepdaughter seven hours later, but the teenager was already dead.
Tremblay was convicted in 2002 of plying five young aboriginal girls with drugs and sexually assaulting them. The victims say he filmed the assaults.
He was released from jail just one year later, without any conditions that he stay away from young girls. He was never placed on a sex offender registry.
Tremblay is currently awaiting trial on separate charges of sex assault and administering a noxious substance.
With a report from CTV British Columbia’s Jon Woodward