'You knew...there was no going back': Andrew Berry rejects Crown's suggestions as cross-examination ends
Warning: disturbing content
Five days of intense cross-examination came to an end Thursday with the Crown making a series of suggestions outlining its theory of what took place in Andrew Berry’s Victoria apartment on Christmas Day 2017.
Berry disagreed with all of the prosecutor’s suggestions. He is charged with second-degree murder in the deaths of his daughters, four year-old Aubrey and six year-old Chloe, and has pleaded not guilty.
The jury has heard the two little girls were found dead in their beds at their father’s apartment, and both had been stabbed multiple times. A pathologist testified Chloe also suffered blunt force trauma to the head.
Berry was found naked and injured in the bathtub. He has testified he owed $25,000 to a loan shark named Paul, and was stabbed by an unknown attacker after returning home from a day of sledding with the girls.
Prosecutor Patrick Weir began by suggesting that by Christmas Eve, life had become hopeless and unbearable in Berry’s mind, and he had decided to kill himself. Berry disagreed.
Weir: “I’m going to suggest you had no money, no prospects, lots of debt, a gambling problem, and you knew that the girls were about to be taken away from you. Do you agree with that?”
Weir suggested Berry chose Christmas because it would be the “largest psychological blow” he could deliver to the girls' mother, Sarah Cotton, with whom he shared custody, and his own parents. Berry disagreed.
Weir suggested Berry wasn’t planning on killing his daughters, but “in the morning something changed, and you lost your temper." Berry disagreed.
Weir: “And I’m going to suggest that it was probably something along the lines of, maybe Chloe waking up and saying that she couldn’t wait to get to her mama’s to open up presents and see her grandparents. Do you agree with that?”
Weir: “And at that point, you lost your temper, Mr. Berry, I suggest. And you pick up that bat that was right there and you hit Chloe with it, and you knew at that point there was no going back. Do you agree or disagree with that, Mr. Berry?”
In May, Saanich police forensic investigator Sgt. Mike Duquette testified he found a broken children’s baseball bat near Chloe, and a bloody knife in the bedroom where Aubrey lay.
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Earlier in Thursday’s cross examination, Weir asked Berry to look through a series of evidence photos showing bloody areas inside his apartment, and pointed out swabs of a knife handle and blade seen in one photo matched Berry’s DNA. Berry had testified he was in and out of consciousness after being stabbed, and remembered “trying” to grab a knife from the kitchen at one point, before being thrown down and stabbed again.
Weir suggested Berry got a knife from the kitchen and stabbed Chloe, and then went to the room where Aubrey was sleeping and stabbed her, before stabbing himself in an effort to die by suicide. Berry disagreed with all of the Crown’s suggestions.
Weir: “And I suggest, Mr. Berry, that you were going to commit suicide and you decided that you couldn’t not take the girls with you. Do you agree with that?”
The trial continues Friday.