Top News

UPDATE: Strangulation, blunt head trauma caused Traci Lynch's death, P.E.I. murder trial hears

Joel Lawrence Clow being led out of Provincil Court in 2011.
Joel Lawrence Clow being led out of Provincil Court in 2011.

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. - A woman who was murdered in Pleasant Grove in 2015 died from strangulation and a blunt head injury, says a forensic pathologist who conducted her autopsy.

Dr. Erik Mont was in P.E.I. Supreme Court in Charlottetown Thursday where he testified about the autopsy he performed on Traci Lynch’s body on July 25, 2015.

During his testimony, Mont detailed the many injuries he noted on Lynch’s body, including multiple bruises, scrapes and what the pathologist said were blunt-force wounds.

Mont said marks on Lynch’s neck were consistent with a ligature being used around her neck.

His testimony came during the fourth day of trial for Joel Lawrence Clow who pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder in Lynch’s death on July 24, 2015.

A statement of admissions presented in court said Clow acknowledged his physical acts must be responsible for Lynch’s unlawful death.

On the day Lynch died, a police dog and its handler found her body in a wheelbarrow under a tarp on Clow’s property.

Justice Nancy Key is hearing the trial after Clow elected to proceed without a jury.

Mont is the deputy chief medical examiner for the Nova Scotia Medical Examiner Service and a forensic pathologist.

He told the court it was apparent right away during the autopsy that Lynch’s body had a number of injuries.

Those included injuries Mont explained in detail on her head, face, neck, back, torso and extremities.

Lynch also had several “brushed abrasions” Mont said indicated something was dragged across her skin or her skin was dragged across something.

Under cross-examination, Mont testified he couldn’t say definitively which cause of death came first and although it was possible it was unlikely she was dead when she was strangled.

The court also heard from toxicology expert Lori Campbell Thursday as she testified by video from Ottawa.

Campbell testified about two reports prepared after analysis of blood samples taken from Joel Lawrence Clow in 2015.

Analysis of Clow’s blood found alcohol, methamphetamine, cannabis related compounds and a cocaine metabolite called benzoylecgonine, Campbell said.

Cocaine wasn’t found in Clow’s blood, Campbell said, but benzoylecgonine indicated prior cocaine use.

The trial resumes Friday.

 

rross@theguardian.pe.ca

twitter.com/ryanrross

Recent Stories