A witness to a violent fight in a downtown St. John's bar this spring says she used a cellphone to photograph an ear part, which she then flushed down a toilet.
Jason English, 30, is being tried for aggravated assault and uttering threats over an incident in May in which part of bartender Ches Bursey's ear was bitten off.
'I saw the piece of the ear in the toilet. I didn't know what to do, so I took pictures and flushed it.' —Witness Tara Thorne
Witness Tara Thorne told provincial court in St. John's on Tuesday that she was also tending bar that night at Spin, a George Street nightclub, when the fight broke out.
Thorne said she did not see Bursey's ear being punctured, but that she did see English turn away and then saw blood running down Bursey's body,
She said that after the fight, she went into a bathroom at the club and saw blood.
"I saw the piece of the ear in the toilet. I didn't know what to do, so I took pictures and flushed it," she said.
The cellphone image is hard to make out, but Thorne testified under oath that it depicts part of Bursey's ear.
When Crown attorney Kathleen O'Reilly asked her how she could identify it, she said, "It looked like the size of the piece that was missing."
Later, asked why she flushed it, she replied, "I wasn't going to pick it up or anything."
As well, Thorne testified she heard English make a threat he would use a bat the next time he saw his target. Thorne said she wasn't sure if English used the word "him" or "them."
Bursey, who has admitted throwing the first punch in the fight, testified last Friday that he has been afraid of being attacked since the incident in May. He later had plastic surgery on his left ear.