Family ‘learned to hate’ after Laura Babcock was killed, sentencing hearing told
TORONTO — The family of Laura Babcock says they have learned to hate since finding out that their daughter was brutally killed and her body was burned in an animal incinerator.
Babcock’s parents and her brother expressed their hatred and heartbreak in a victim impact statement read out Monday at a sentencing hearing for Dellen Millard and Mark Smich, who were found guilty in December of first-degree murder.
“We hate you for taking Laura’s life away from her,” the family wrote. “She should be laughing, dancing and enjoying life.”
Millard, 32, of Toronto, and Smich, 30, of Oakville, Ont., were previously found guilty of first-degree murder in the 2013 death of Hamilton man Tim Bosma, whose remains were burned in the same animal incinerator — called The Eliminator — they had used to get rid of Babcock’s body.
The jury in the Babcock case agreed with the Crown that the pair murdered the 23-year-old Toronto woman because she had become the odd woman out in a love triangle with Millard and his girlfriend at the time, Christina Noudga.
First-degree murder carries an automatic life sentence with no chance of parole for at least 25 years.
The judge presiding over the Babcock case was expected to decide, however, if he would impose consecutive or concurrent periods of parole ineligibility.
Crown prosecutors told court they want the parole ineligibility period in the Babcock case added to that imposed for Bosma’s murder.
“These tragic crimes defy explanation,” said Crown lawyer Jill Cameron. “These two were selfish predators who delighted in murdering innocent people. Anything but consecutive sentences would offend the principles of justice.”
Millard and Smich’s lawyers have made submissions that argue against consecutive sentences.
Babcock’s family said the woman’s death has taken a heavy toll.
“We always taught our children not to use the word hate. It is too horrible and destructive, but you men have made us hate,” said the Babcocks victim impact statement. “We’ve learned to hate.”
Bosma’s family and friends also attended Monday’s sentencing hearing, which was taking place in a packed Toronto courtroom.
Liam Casey, The Canadian Press