'I lied to many people:' Man accused of killing woman found in tub testifies

·3 min read

EDMONTON — A jury has heard that a man accused of killing a woman who was found dead in a bathtub in his Edmonton hotel room lied several times about knowing her and paying her for sex.

Bradley Barton, 52 and from Mississauga, Ont., testified for a second day Tuesday in his manslaughter trial.

He has pleaded not guilty to killing Cindy Gladue, a 36-year-old Metis and Cree mother, at the Yellowhead Inn in June 2011.

The trial previously heard that Gladue, who had four times the legal limit of alcohol in her system when she died, suffered from a severe wound to her vagina and bled to death.

Barton told the jury that he lied to nearly everyone, including police officers, his wife, hotel employees and colleagues, about how he knew Gladue and what happened before she died.

"I lied to a lot of people," Barton said from the witness stand.

"I just wanted to get out of there and continue my day."

This is the second trial for Barton in relation to Gladue's death. His first trial in 2015 sparked rallies and calls for justice for Indigenous women. The case ended up before the Supreme Court of Canada. The high court ordered in 2019 that Barton be retried.

GRAPHIC WARNING: The following details may disturb some readers.

On Monday, Barton testified that he asked a man picking up cigarette butts if he had a lady friend, and the man brought Gladue to him. Barton offered her $60 for sex.

He said they had consensual sex that involved him using four of his fingers at once up to his knuckles.

He testified that he called her the next day and she returned for a second night of sex. He put all five fingers into her vagina. He noticed blood on his hand, he said, then she went to the bathroom and he fell asleep.

He said he found her dead in the tub the next morning.

But the jury also heard that when Barton next checked out of the hotel, he told a colleague that Gladue had knocked on his door the night before and asked to take a shower. The co-worker told him to call police. Barton told hotel workers that he forgot some papers, returned to the room and called 911 from there.

A video was played in court of Barton being interviewed by police. In the video, he tells an officer that Gladue arrived at his door and offered herself to him sexually, but he declined.

"Mr. Barton, would you agree with me you engaged in a pattern of dishonesty," asked Crown prosecutor Julie Snowdon.

"You can call it dishonesty. To me it was just another day," Barton responded.

"To you it's just a regular day?" Snowdon asked.

"To me, it was just a couple of beers with Cindy," Barton said.

Snowdon asked Barton why he didn't immediately call 911.

"I would suggest to you Mr. Barton, you were not panicking, you were calculating," Snowdon said.

"Not at all," Barton replied.

Barton's lawyer, Dino Bottos, previously told the jury in his opening statement that Barton lied because he was worried about losing his job and that his wife and two sons would find out he had paid for sex.

Medical experts previously testified that Gladue had an 11-centimetre tear to her vaginal wall, and that it was like nothing they had seen before in their years of work. A gynecologist told the court the wound was due to excessive force and would have been painful.

Barton testified his hand did not cause the fatal injury.

The trial is to resume Wednesday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 2, 2021.

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This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship

Fakiha Baig, The Canadian Press