Wife of the mass shooter in Nova Scotia tells her story by public investigation

The Canadian press

Published Friday, 15 July 2022 5:24 EDT

Last updated on Friday, 15 July 2022 5:24 EDT

The regular spouse of the man responsible for the mass shooting in Nova Scotia began telling his story publicly for the first time before an investigation Friday.

The investigation has heard that Lisa Banfield was beaten and severely wounded by the killer immediately before he began her shooting on the night of April 18, 2020. She has told police and investigators that she fled into the woods and later showed up to tell it to the police. that her partner was still at large on the morning of April 19, 2020.

At the time, he was disguised as a Mountie and was driving a vehicle resembling an RCMP cruiser.

The Commission of Inquiry has agreed to have Banfield testify without being subjected to cross-examination by lawyers representing other parties, primarily because she could be traumatized by having to relive the violence she endured.

Likewise, the three commissioners leading the investigation recently decided that Banfield would not face questions about the domestic violence she was subjected to during her 19-year relationship with the killer.

Commission lawyer Gillian Hnatiw asked Banfield a series of questions about the early stages of the couple’s relationship, which began in 2001 when they met at a bar in downtown Halifax.

Banfield said he showed up with two dozen long-stemmed roses on their first date. “I thought it was on the high side,” she said in a slightly flat voice.

She also told how later that evening she was impressed by his reaction when his car was rear-ended by a vehicle driven by a young woman. Banfield said he was polite and undisturbed by the accident.

“I thought, ‘This is a good guy,'” she said.

Some members of the families of the victims are attending the hearing today, which is being held at a convention center in Halifax.

Banfield is accompanied by two of her sisters, Janice and Maureen.

Hnatiw then showed Banfield a series of photographs of the couple’s cottage and “warehouse” in Portapique. One of the images from inside the warehouse showed the killer’s replica RCMP crosses.

Earlier this week, the commission released a document based on evidence provided by Banfield during interviews with the RCMP and the investigation describing the killer’s long history of violence.

Attorney Michael Scott, whose firm represents families of 14 of the victims, says the investigation’s decision to limit the interrogation will leave lasting doubts about Banfield’s testimony.

During the 13 hours he was at large, the killer shot dead 22 people, including a pregnant woman and a Mountie. He was shot and killed by two Mounties on the morning of April 19, 2020.

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