The operator who took Brenda Moreside's 911 call on the day she was killed admitted to a fatality inquiry she treated the call like a vandalism case and that she was dismissive, used unprofessional language and an improper tone.

That behaviour deprived her of getting more information from Moreside, Yen Tran wrote last week in an affidavit that was admitted to the hearing Monday. 


A fatality inquiry into the death of Brenda Moreside begins today. The High Prairie, Alta., woman called 911 when her boyfriend was trying to break into her home, but police did not respond. (Canadian Press)

"I am a different person as a result of that call," Tran wrote. "I treated this call like a vandalism call which was incorrect."

Police weren't dispatched after the 911 call, but went to Moreside's home 12 days later on a tip from a relative of the man eventually convicted of manslaughter for stabbing her to death.

The case was first brought to light by CBC News in June 2005 after obtaining a classified briefing to the commissioner of the RCMP.

Moreside called the emergency number in February 2005, asking police for help because her drunken boyfriend was breaking into their home in northern Alberta.

Stan Willier, who had been in a common-law relationship with Moreside for five years, called Brenda's voice mail and slurred, "Hi wife. I'm comin' home." 

Willier entered the home through a broken window and fell asleep on the couch.

In the 911 call that was played at the fatality inquiry, Moreside told the operator that Willier lived with her part-time and that she wanted him out. 

She was told the man couldn't be charged with breaking into his own residence. Moreside persisted and the operator asked an RCMP officer from High Prairie to call her.

At the end of the call, Moreside urged the operator to "make it quick" because Willier was pushing through the door she was holding — information that was never passed on to the officer. 

The constable got Moreside's voice mail by the time he called. "How's it going? Call you back in a few minutes. Bye," he said. 

The RCMP apologized at the time and admitted an error had been made.

Shelley Forbes, a 911 training coordinator, testified that the operator should have passed on that information to police and that the operator should have stayed on the line with Moreside. 

She called the operator "condescending, unprofessional and inappropriate." 

Later Willier would tell police Moreside came at him with a knife. Willier got hold of the knife and stabbed her while she was trying to get to the door.

Twelve days later, Willier told his stepdaughter that he'd blacked out and killed Brenda.

After his stepdaughter called police, Moreside's body was found. She had been stabbed seven times.

According to the medical examiner, her blood-alcohol level was more than twice the legal limit for driving and she had a small amount of cocaine and prescription medication in her system.

The inquiry, held in an Edmonton courtroom, is expected to hear from 10 witnesses. It is scheduled to conclude on Friday.

All the witnesses except one are RCMP officers, with the final witness a Crown prosecutor who specializes in domestic violence cases.

Although the 911 call was played during the inquiry, RCMP lawyers are opposed to having the recording released to the media. 

CBC is planning to have lawyers argue for access on Tuesday. 

The CBC's Janice Johnston and James Hees live-tweeted the inquiry from the Edmonton courthouse.


With files from Janice Johnston and James Hees