Businessman's accused killer breaks down in court
A man charged with killing a Calgary businessman testified for the first time in his own defence Tuesday, blaming his co-accused for going too far.
Jack Beauchamp, 49, the head of a mortgage lending company, was shot six times and found dead in his downtown office in January 2006.
Robert Deer and Mohamed Karim are both charged with first-degree murder. The Crown believes a failed business deal led to Beauchamp's death.
Deer, 54, told the jury Tuesday that tensions escalated between himself and Beauchamp through an exchange of phone calls and e-mails one month before the shooting.
At one point, Deer slammed his fist down on the witness stand saying, "I was more than annoyed, I was pissed off."
Deer also admitted sending an e-mail to Beauchamp that said, "If you live like a gangster, you should expect to die like a gangster." At that point, Deer started crying on the witness stand and said, "I regret it, I'm sorry I said that."
Deer continued to break down as he told the court how he asked Karim, the co-accused, to scare Beauchamp.
"I didn't know he had a gun. I would have stopped," Deer recalled.
At one point in Deer's testimony, Karim blurted out in court: "That is some Hollywood acting, Bob. You should be ashamed of yourself, disrespecting everyone like that."
Earlier on Tuesday, Deer said he hired Karim, 25, to work as a landscaper eight months before the shooting.
"He always wanted to please me," Deer explained, saying that Karim considered him a father figure. "I took Mohamed under my wing."
The trial has already heard that $1,000 was deposited into Karim's account at a branch in northwest Calgary two days after Beauchamp was found dead in his downtown office.
Security video played for jurors appeared to show one of Deer's business partners making a transaction at the same time and at the same bank branch.