Warning: Graphic content
A Surrey man accused of second-degree murder in the decapitation and dismemberment of his roommate in 2008 has fired his lawyer in the home stretch of what has been a lengthy trial.
Ernie Allan Hosack, 40, is accused of killing Richard Falardeau, 54, and desecrating his body. His lawyer, Brian Coleman, was just about to launch into his final arguments on Friday morning, in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver, when Hosack pulled the plug.
"Mr. Hosack came into court this morning and decided he was going to dismiss me as his counsel, which he did. Notwithstanding the judge's comments to him, he persisted in doing that," Coleman said.
Justice Terry Schultes adjourned the case to Jan. 10 to give Hosack time to find a new lawyer.
"I think we're all being held in suspense," Crown prosecutor Brad Kielmann said. "I think it's kind of in limbo now."
"As it stands, there's no mistrial application."
Chris McPherson, Kielmann's fellow Crown prosecutor, gave his final submissions, for the second time, in court Thursday. He argued Hosack had both the opportunity and motive to kill Falardeau, whom he'd met at a coffee shop in Surrey.
Earlier in the trial, back in July of this year, the court heard Falardeau had invited Hosack to share an attic apartment he'd been renting at 14358 88th Ave. where the Surrey RCMP Missing Persons Unit encountered clouds of flies, in the August heat, after Falardeau's brother had reported him missing.
Venturing further into the sweltering attic, police found Falardeau's headless torso stuffed inside a suitcase in a closet. His thumbs, anus, scrotum and testes were found in plastic bags in the refrigerator freezer. His skull, with some hair and part of the spine still attached, was found three months later, in marshy tall grass in a hollow off a pathway along the Hydro right-of-way, near 92nd Avenue and King George Boulevard.
During the trial - held in New Westminster and Vancouver - McPherson said that when the police asked Hosack where he put Falardeau's head, an "entity" purporting to be his long-dead grandfather replied, "In the Y next to the Z. Next to Zion. You don't want to go."
McPherson argued that Hosack murdered Faladeau to punish him for "messing" with his designs. The prosecutor noted that during a 12-hour police interview "chock-a-block" full of delusions, Hosack spoke of nuclear cutting wire, more efficient ways to wage war, light-speed engines and other stuff he'd designed. During his interview with police, Hosack said Falardeau had belittled him about his designs, laughed at him, and threw his plans and binders out. Falardeau fell into darkness, he said, "because he was looking at something that wasn't his to behold."
Toward the end of his interview with police, the court heard, Hosack spoke of "The Entity." A voice claiming to be that of his dead grandpa said Falardeau died "faster than he ever thought possible" and that his grandson saw him "snap his head like a twig."
The voice told police he "appropriated" Falardeau's soul and then "scattered" it. "You would call it murder," the voice said.