Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Man found in barrel killed over a drug debt: Crown

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He was just 22 and about to embark on a new chapter of life with his girlfriend by moving from Winnipeg to Calgary with her.

But Chad Davis's future plans came to an abrupt and brutal end after he was killed over a drug debt inside a Prince Rupert Street garage and his body wrapped in plastic, placed in a barrel and dumped in a river north of the city.

That's the essential crux of the allegations made by Crown prosecutors and police against Corey Tymchyshyn, 37, and Kristopher Brincheski, 31.

The two men — described as friends and business partners — have pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder in connection to Davis's death, which justice officials and RCMP believe occurred on Feb. 6, 2008, they day he was allegedly lured to Tymchyshyn's residence and killed.

They are presumed innocent.

Their trial began this morning in the Court of Queen's Bench. Six men and six women are to decide the facts in the trial, slated to last until the end of February.

"There's a lot of evidence to go through," Crown attorney Keith Eyrikson told them in his opening statement meant to orient jurors with what they're likely to hear in coming weeks.

According to the Crown, Davis owed Tymchyshyn a debt of somewhere between $18,000 and $28,000.

"You will hear some evidence that Mr. Davis was no angel," said Eyrikson. "(But) whomever and whatever Chad Davis was, what occurred here was morally wrong and a criminal act," he said.

The Crown intends to show Davis's blood was found in the garage where he was killed, and that when RCMP came to investigate the crime scene, the interior had been ripped out and used at a renovation site in Anola, Eyrikson said.

As well, jurors will be told of how Tymchyshyn had helped Davis rent a storage locker in the city — and that there's evidence of him being at the facility on the day the killing occurred.

Court will also hear about a missing persons probe into Davis's disappearance, and how things Tymchyshyn told a police investigator ultimately didn't add up, Eyrikson said.

Many of the victim's personal effects were ultimately found in Brincheski's possession, Eyrikson alleged. Text messages and cell phone records also play a role in the Crown's case, he said.

Shavings from the barrel used to dispose of Davis were found inside his Jeep, Eyrikson added.

Davis's remains weren't found until July 2008, when cottager Richard Marcotte noticed a barrel with holes near its lid floating by his dock on the Lee River. He testified he didn't think much of it at first and rolled it up onto shore as far as he could.

Two weeks passed before he and another man went to empty the vessel and remove it, he said. After unsnapping the lid, he said they began pulling out a tarp that was inside.

"Some fluids came out of it," said Marcotte. "It looked like white grease." After tugging on the tarp some more, he said he could see a belt and some pants inside.

The men stopped what they were doing to call police.

In her initial charge to the jury, Justice Brenda Keyser twice cautioned them that Brincheski and Tymchyshyn are entitled to separate and individual consideration despite the fact they're standing trial together.

"You do not have to make the same decision for each person that's charged," she said.


Updated on Monday, January 20, 2014 at 1:08 PM CST: Writethru

2:12 PM: corrects typo

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