Tasha Mack is seen in this police handout photo provided as evidence by the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta. A woman charged after a toddler was found dead outside an Edmonton church has pleaded not guilty at the start of her trial. Tasha Mack is accused of second-degree murder in the 19-month-old’s death. The boy’s lifeless body was found outside the Good Shepherd Anglican Church in April 2017. Mack and the boy’s father, Joey Crier, both face charges. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta

Edmonton murder trial hears toddler went from chunky, happy to skin and bones

19-month old Anthony Joseph Raine was left to die outside a church, the court heard

A woman who lived with two people charged in the death of a toddler found outside an Edmonton church says she often heard crying, yelling, smacking and more crying from their bedroom.

Tasha-Lee Doreen Mack and the child’s father, Joey Crier, are charged with second-degree murder in the 2017 death of 19-month old Anthony Joseph Raine.

Mack pleaded not guilty Monday at the start of her trial. A date has not yet been set for Crier’s trial.

An agreed statement of facts submitted in Mack’s case said that Crier, Mack and Anthony moved into the Edmonton home of Alexa Noseworthy and Adrian Hampshire in mid-March and stayed there for about five or six weeks.

Anthony was a chunky, happy baby when he arrived, Noseworthy said, but he was “skin and bones” by the time the family left in April.

“He lost a lot of weight,” Noseworthy testified.

She recalled Crier once hitting the boy in the mouth as the child sat in an exersaucer. Another time she saw the father raise his arm above the boy’s playpen.

“Skin on skin has an obvious sound,” she said. “He closed the door. I heard two more.”

Noseworthy told court that Mack and Crier started leaving Anthony in the bedroom and she rarely saw them feed him.

“I heard lots of fighting,” she said. “It got worse.”

Crown prosecutor Mark van Manen suggested Mack either abused the boy or did nothing to stop the violence that killed him.

“The Crown expects to show that, in the two months before Anthony was found dead … he was the victim of physical abuse,” he said.

The abuse became more severe as time went on, van Manen added, and both Mack and Crier are liable for the boy’s death.

The agreed statement of facts said a witness saw a couple pushing a stroller near the Good Shepherd Anglican Church on April 18, 2017.

“She saw one of the individuals open the garbage bin at the corner of the church and throw a white blanket taken from inside the stroller into the garbage bin,” the statement said.

It added that the boy was propped up in a sitting position, under a blue blanket, at the side of the church.

Three days later, a woman out for a walk noticed what she thought was a bundle of garbage.

Davida Marantz pulled back the blanket, then ran into the church, where some women were preparing for a bazaar, and said: “It’s a baby. Come, come. It’s a baby.”

A paramedic arrived and determined the child was dead.

“His head was swollen and dark purple in colour. He had dried blood around his face and in both of his ears,” stated the document. “He was cold to the touch with circular patterns of bruising and indentation marks on his neck.”

The next day, police released surveillance video of a man and a woman pushing a stroller with a blue blanket. A tip from Noseworthy identified the people as Crier and Mack.

A bus driver who recognized the pair later called his control centre, which contacted police, said the court document.

It said Thomas Loughlin told police that Crier and Mack had boarded his bus with an empty stroller, and that he had overheard Crier tell Mack that they ”needed to get rid of this thing.”

Loughlin said Mack responded with laughter.

Crier and Mack were arrested by police that night.

Mack’s trial is expected to take several weeks.

ALSO READ: ‘My son’s not breathing:’ 911 call played at Alberta meningitis death

ALSO READ: No jail time for Abbotsford man who sent sexually explicit photos to 12-year-old

Colette Derworiz, The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Latest round of Columbia River Treaty talks wrap up

It was the first oppportunity for local Indigenous Nations to participate as observers

Runners hit the streets for Special Olympics

Cranbrook RCMP teamed up with Cranbrook Safeway on Saturday, June 22, for… Continue reading

School board reports January malware attack

Email systems compromised at board office and Fernie Learning Centre, according to memo

Bowen Byram goes fourth overall in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft

The Cranbrook native was picked by the Colorado Avalanche in the NHL draft

Residents asked to leave ‘fawn in area’ signs alone

Signs are there for the protection of deer and people

Air Canada reviewing how crew left sleeping passenger on parked plane

In a Facebook post, the woman said she woke up ‘all alone’ on a ‘cold dark’ aircraft

Heroism medal for B.C. woman who tried to save wheelchair-bound man stuck on rail tracks

Julie Callaghan awarded Carnegie Medal from U.S.-based foundation for ‘extraordinary heroism’

Surrey RCMP raises Pride flag Monday amid din of protesters

There were about 30 protesters on either side, and 20 Mounties doing crowd control

What’s on at the Library

Mike Selby Ian Frisch describes the experience of joining an underground and… Continue reading

Thieves steal tents from B.C. school, Grade 7 camping trip happens anyway

Nanaimo businesses, school staff and parents ensure trip goes on

Disaster relief: four tips for coping with wildfires, smoky skies

Being shrouded in smoke or having to flee from wildfires can cause anxiety, stress, depression

Only legal pot shop between Vancouver and Kamloops now open

Private cannabis store on Skwah land in Chilliwack is first B.C. licensee to be Indigenous owned

Canadian communities responding to climate change

New research highlights state of local adaptation planning in Canada

Victoria woman in L.A. hospital after she was run over twice

Lynn Phillips has suffered from multiple broken bones and internal bleeding

Most Read