Murder trial of caregiver underway
The murder trial of a 59-year-old woman accused of killing a wheelchair-bound woman she was caring for has heard that the accused "lost it" and stabbed the victim to death.
Ellen Dennett is on trial for second degree murder in connection with the death of 78-year-old Kathleen Livingstone in 2011. She is also accused of stealing and using the victim's credit card.
Livingstone was found stabbed to death in her Brossard bungalow sometime around June 25.
The court saw a videotaped police interrogation in which Dennett is seen wearing a white inmates' jumpsuit and being questioned by a Longueuil police investigator. She is often seen crying and breaking down as she describes her version of events. Dennett was also seen getting emotional sitting in the glassed-in prisoner's box while watching herself on video.
Dennett told the police officer she gave up her job and family in the U.S. to be with Livingstone's son who she claims made promises to her he never kept. Dennett is said to be a distant cousin. She said she moved in with Livingstone in May 2011.
"It was okay at the beginning," Dennett told the investigator. "I did everything for her, gave her money, bought groceries, went places with her."
But Dennett said everything soon turned sour.
"Everything I wanted to do was wrong," Dennett said in the video. "She criticized me. I couldn't even make a cup of coffee for her, it was the wrong way."
At one point, she breaks down, saying, "I loved her."
"I lost it. I coudn't take it anymore," Dennett sobbed. "There's a side of her people didn't see."
Dennett said they were arguing at one point and Livingstone "was swearing at me."
"I stabbed her, pushed her down the stairs," Dennett told the investigator.
"Someting just took over. I stabbed her."
Dennett said she got the knife from the kitchen. then said she needed to get away, that she made reservations to get out, took the credit card and went to Old Montreal to the hotel.
"What was I thinking?" Dennett said to the investigator.
Dennett also said she took another knife with her.
"That was the one I was going to use on myself," Dennett said.
Earlier in the morning, a police officer and crime scene investigator testified about what they saw at the crime scene. The officer went over numerous photos, testifying they seized a knife and a pillowcase with red stains. Other photos were taken two days later at the Hotel Nelligan in Old Montreal, where they seized Livingstone's credit card, another knife, a pair of jeans and towels, both appearing to have blood stains.
This is the second tragedy in the Livingstone family. Livingstone's daughter was killed in the 1972 Bluebird Fire café.
The crown said it would likely wrap up its case with the viewing of the video.
The defence is supposed to begin its case tomorrow, starting with the testimony of the accused.
The trial is expected to finish this week.
Photo: Robert Livingstone