The Crown’s only eyewitness to the death of Evan Bear took the stand on Tuesday, and described the scuffle she said left him bleeding out on his kitchen floor.
It was the latest in a series of shocks on the second day of testimony in the trial of Robyn Laura Ermine. Earlier, Bear’s family and friends rushed out of the Prince Albert courtroom as video footage showed the dead body of their loved one.
Ermine is facing second-degree murder charges for allegedly stabbing Bear, her boyfriend at the time. Ermine’s step-sister, Shelinda Vallier, was with them at their home on Muskoday First Nation in the early morning hours of February 21, 2015. She said she witnessed an argument that quickly escalated into violence.
The three had been drinking throughout the previous evening, going through two cases of Budweiser and a bottle of vodka. Vallier left the couple in the kitchen to go get some sleep. But when she returned for a glass of juice, she found Ermine and Bear in a heated shouting match.
“It got to the point where they where they were just hitting each other,” she said.
Both were throwing blows, according to Vallier. She said she saw her step-sister reach for something on the counter and start “swinging” at Bear. She couldn’t recall what it was, but said she remembers what Bear said:
“As if you stabbed me.”
Then, Vallier told the court, he fought back.
“He threw her to the floor,” Vallier said. “He was on top of her. He started banging her head on the floor.”
She said she noticed he was bleeding.
“It was squirting out of his neck, it seemed like it would come out every time he breathed,” Vallier said.
Vallier said she tried to break up the fight, yelling at them to stop. Bear stood up, and seemed to realize that he was in trouble.
“I’m bleeding out,” she recounted him as saying.
For more on this story, see the May 10 print or e-edition of the Daily Herald.