Accused killer Joe Verma was trying to help Brittney Irving before her murder, trial hears

Published: October 9, 2013
Brittney irving

Brittney Irving was found murdered in East Kelowna on April 26, 2010. Joe Verma allegedly bought $100,000 worth of marijuana off her is charged with shooting her to death. Kelowna RCMP

KELOWNA DAILY COURIER

Joe Verma is staying quiet about the day Brittney Irving disappeared and relying on his lawyers to defend him.

After a month of listening to witnesses testify against him, the man charged with shooting Irving to death in a drug deal has decided not to testify in his defence. Instead, his lawyers are expected to argue Wednesday the pair never met up as planned on April 6, 2010 and Verma had nothing to do with the 24-year-old’s murder.

The Crown’s final witness on Tuesday left the B.C. Supreme Court jury with more evidence to consider. Sgt. Sam Ghadban recorded an interview with Verma outside one of the Landmark buildings in Kelowna two months after Irving disappeared. Verma told him police were after the wrong guy.

“She was into some big sh*t with some big people,” he said on the recording played in court Tuesday. “I’m f***ing small fry . . . You guys are wasting your time.”

Verma, on trial for first-degree murder, told police he’d planned a marijuana deal with Irving the day anyone last saw her, but she never showed up.

His cousin Jason Labonte told the jury Verma and Irving each came over to his place and dumped two bags and a box in his garage. The two then left in separate vehicles.

Hours later, Verma asked Labonte to drive to a remote part of McCulloch Road and help him dislodge a truck that was stuck in the mud. Labonte eventually led police to the spot and officers found Irving’s bullet-ridden body in the bushes nearby.

Verma had borrowed the Ford F-150 from his hunting friend, Mike Roberts. Two months later, he denied he was in the truck that day.

When Ghadban asked him if police should focus on Roberts, Verma said no.

Instead, he pointed to the marijuana dealers Irving was supposed to do business with on April 6. Police had already busted her for running a grow-op a week or so earlier. She’d lost her house, the crop and other people’s money, Verma told the officer.

“Look at the house she f***ing lost. Look at the dope she lost. Look at the money that she lost. She was stressing on everybody, not just me. She was doing Oxycontin, snorting f***ing coke, partying till odd ends of the night. You guys can figure it out, man . . . It ain’t that hard.”

Verma and Irving had “moved a couple of pounds here and there,” but nothing big. He ended up renting her a room at a Kelowna motel because she had nowhere to live, he said.

“She was f***ing scared for her life . . . so I got her a hotel and put it under my name and this is where we live. All I was doing was trying to help her.”

Verma was waiting for her April 6, but she never even answered his call. The last time she texted him was around 11 a.m. or noon, he said.

He appeared to resent talking to Ghadban, but understood he was a suspect. He owns a company, he said. He wants to stay away from “losers” and be legitimate.

“I’ve been out for three years now and away from everybody. I haven’t been to nightclubs . . . I have nothing to do with it.”

If he did, he’d be living at his lawyer’s house, he said. He refused to “rat” or suggest anyone with a grudge who may have killed Irving.

“I’d rather sit in jail than (have) my friends shot at or babies getting murdered . . . I’d rather protect my family,” he said.

“Pay attention, dig deep on what she was doing, who she was involved with.”

Related Stories:

Read more Kelowna Daily Courier news here


Tags: , , , , , , , ,





Featured

Seniors-documentary-Parents

Stricken by her mom’s death, Sikh filmmaker learns ‘to keep moving forward’

LARISSA CHAHUTE VANCOUVER DESI When Vancouver filmmaker Baljit Sangra’s mother suddenly died after being struck by a car, Sangra was so devastated that she wanted…
Continue Reading »

Royal Wedding

Aga Khan’s eldest son Prince Rahim and his wife Kendra Salwa Spears expecting their first child

VANCOUVER DESI The Aga Khan’s eldest son Prince Rahim and his wife Princess Salwa (Kendra Salwa Spears) are expecting their first child, the spiritual leader…
Continue Reading »

CIVIC ELECTIONS

Surrey mayoral candidates share city visions at first meeting

AMY REID VANCOUVER DESI SURREY — Surrey mayoral candidates met for the city’s first all-candidates meeting Thursday night at SFU. Six of the seven candidates…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

Seniors-documentary-Parents

Stricken by her mom’s death, Sikh filmmaker learns ‘to keep moving forward’

LARISSA CHAHUTE VANCOUVER DESI When Vancouver filmmaker Baljit Sangra’s mother suddenly died after being struck by a car, Sangra was so devastated that she wanted…
Continue Reading »

CIVIC ELECTIONS

Surrey mayoral candidates share city visions at first meeting

AMY REID VANCOUVER DESI SURREY — Surrey mayoral candidates met for the city’s first all-candidates meeting Thursday night at SFU. Six of the seven candidates…
Continue Reading »

OTTAWA

Surrey MP Nina Grewal’s account of the shootout in Ottawa

NINA GREWAL SPECIAL TO IANS  When Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper was speaking at about 9.30 a.m. Wednesday in a caucus room of parliament, we…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

student dead

Two dead, including gunman, in school shooting north of Seattle

DOUG ESSER THE ASSOCIATED PRESS MARYSVILLE, Wash. — A student opened fire in a high school cafeteria north of Seattle on Friday, killing at least…
Continue Reading »

attack on Parliament Hill

Ottawa shooter kicked out of Burnaby mosque two years ago

Zehaf-Bibeau was asked to leave the mosque, because he had “gotten a hold of keys and stuff from the mosque, and when he got out…
Continue Reading »

labour laws violation

U.S. company penalized for mistreatment of Indian employees working 122 hours in a week

MICHAEL LIEDTKE THE ASSOCIATED PRESS SAN FRANCISCO – A Silicon Valley company is paying more than $43,000 in back wages and penalties after labour regulators…
Continue Reading »

DESI-SOCCER

Surrey soccer captain played the U-18 national club championship using only one foot

KYLE BENNING SURREY NOW SOUTH SURREY – Kyle Sohi’s perseverance and performance in the 2014 Sport Chek National Club Championships U-18 Cup Final might go…
Continue Reading »

SURREY-FIELD HOCKEY

Barinder Rasode announces plan to develop field hockey pitch in Surrey

Third field at Tamanawis Park would cost approximately $3 million KYLE BENNING SURREY NOW NEWTON – Barinder Rasode and the One Surrey team were at…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Stan Lee-Bollywood

Stan Lee plans Bollywood film on his first Indian superhero

VANCOUVER DESI Stan Lee, the legendary ‘Spiderman’ creator, is reportedly planning his Bollywood entry with a film on his Indian superhero character ‘Chakra: the Invincible’….
Continue Reading »

KANGANA RANAUT

Even my parents think I am weird, says Bollywood ‘Queen’ Kangana Ranaut

HINDUSTAN TIMES Kangana Ranaut has always made unconventional choices, be it her movies or the way she dresses. And the actor says she’s happy the…
Continue Reading »

Happy New Year-Bollywood

Happy New Year: Mandatory ‘formula’ and all those old Bollywood references

HINDUSTAN TIMES Film: Happy New Year Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Deepika Padukone, Abhishek Bachchan, Boman Irani, Sonu Sood, Vivaan Shah, Jackie Shroff Director: Farah Khan…
Continue Reading »