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Forensic evidence presented at trial

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A blood-revealing chemical police sprayed in the garage where Chad Davis was allegedly murdered revealed several spots of interest to investigators, a jury heard Thursday.

The trial of Corey Tymchyshyn, 37, and Kristopher Brincheski, 31, is now delving heavily into the complex world of forensic testing done by RCMP after the 22-year-old's body was recovered from a black plastic barrel found in a Manitoba lake on July 23, 2008.

Police and prosecutors suspect Davis was killed in Winnipeg many months earlier, on Feb. 6, inside the garage at 703 Prince Rupert Ave. His body was placed in the barrel, which was driven out in his own Jeep to the Lac du Bonnet area and dumped in the water, the Crown alleges.

Tymchyshyn and Brincheski have pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder and are presumed innocent.

Tiny plastic shavings, found in a box that had once been in Davis's Jeep but was moved, appeared physically and chemically indistinguishable from a sample of the barrel, RCMP forensic chemist Dr. Kimberly Kenny testified Thursday.

This finding comes with a significant caveat, court heard. Both samples tested were simply "low-density polyurethane," a versatile and cheap plastic used in ubiquitous items such as shopping bags or plastic containers, said Kenny.

Kenny also did a microscopic chemical analysis on bits of black-on-white plastic seized from boards that had been removed from the garage, as well as a tarp found inside the barrel with Davis.

Again, a comparison of the glossy plastic bits found them to be indistinguishable from the tarp sample.

RCMP searched the garage and home on Prince Rupert over several days starting on Sept. 7, 2008, Cpl. Maria Forester testified. A chemical that glows when in contact with blood on a surface was used on the garage floor, revealing several spots of interest, she said.

Swabs of certain regions were taken and sent for forensic analysis, she said. Forester could not speak to any results of those tests.

Crown attorney Brent Davidson read to jurors a statement of facts from Tymchyshyn's ex-girlfriend, meaning she will not be called to testify.

The woman said she had lived with Tymchyshyn at 703 Prince Rupert, and between February and April 2007 recalled seeing three large plastic barrels on the property. Two of them were in the garage.

One was blue and the other black, the statement said.

She knew Tymchyshyn to be "very familiar" with the Lac du Bonnet area, court heard.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 31, 2014 A10

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