Montreal

Richard Bain murder trial: Dave Courage sarcastically thanks accused

“The bullet that the gentleman fired went through my friend's chest, it entered my hip, penetrating my coccyx, rupturing my rectum and … spiralling my life out of control," survivor Dave Courage told the jury on Tuesday.

Technician who survived 2012 PQ election victory shooting testifies on Day 4 of trial, staring down accused

Dave Courage testified in court that it's painful for him to sit or stand for long periods of time, because his tailbone was shattered when he was shot.

Dave Courage, who survived the Sept. 4, 2012, shooting outside the Metropolis nightclub, stared directly into the eyes of the man accused of shooting him throughout his short but intense testimony Tuesday.

Courage started off his testimony staring at the ground, but at one point he looked over to Richard Bain and said, sarcastically, "Thank you. Smile away."

Before he turned to address Bain directly, Courage had been outlining how the bullet had hit his friend, lighting technician Denis Blanchette, before piercing his hip.

"The bullet that the gentleman fired went through my friend's chest, and it entered my hip, penetrating my coccyx, rupturing my rectum and … spiralling my life out of control."

He tried to set us on fire. He tried to burn us.- Dave Courage, Crown witness and shooting survivor

Bain, who is accused of Blanchette's first-degree murder and Courage's attempted murder, watched intently as Courage continued.

Courage visibly struggled through the seven minutes he was in the witness box, taking deep breaths and pausing several times.

"I was fraternizing with my friends, Denis and others, outside the Metropolis. Denis wanted to smoke a cigarette. I told him to wait a second. And then five seconds later I heard the gunshot, and I felt an immense amount of pain, and I fell down," Courage told the jury.

"The ambulance took us away after he tried to set us on fire. He tried to burn us."

He described feeling pain in his hip, not knowing what it was, then being pulled inside the nightclub by his friends — and seeing a fireball. 

Richard Henry Bain faces several charges, including first-degree murder, in connection with the PQ election night victory shooting in September 2012. (CBC)

The Crown prosecutor asked Courage if he saw the gunman that night.

Courage replied while looking at Bain, saying, "No, I see him now."

When pressed about what else he remembered from that night, Courage said he remembered being taken out of the ambulance and hearing someone ask, "If I was the dead one."

Bain faces six charges altogether, including three counts of attempted murder, as well as arson and possession of an incendiary device.

Bain has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Several technicians testified they were waiting in a group of ten or so on the stairs at this back entrance to the Metropolis, when a detonation rang out and they saw a man holding a firearm approach them. (Sûreté du Québec)

'I didn't even have time to say hello'

Earlier on Tuesday, the court heard from several technicians who said they had been waiting outside the nightclub that night, standing near their colleagues, Courage and Blanchette.

François Blouin, another technician, told the jury he was waiting on the club's back stairs with his co-workers when the shooter approached them.

"It came out of the blue," Blouin told the jury.

"Denis Blanchette arrived, and I didn't even have time to say hello to him, and then this individual ... shot a bullet," a witness told the jury on Tuesday in the Richard Bain murder trial.

Madame  Marois  ... was screaming — 'What's going on?'-  François   Blouin , Crown's witness and technician

​When Crown prosecutor Dennis Galiatsatos asked his witness to describe the gunman's expression, Blouin answered: "an expression of disgust."

Blouin said after the shot was fired, he crouched down and escaped into the club. 

"At one point, I ended up face to face with Madame Marois who was screaming — 'What's going on?'"

"It was a strange night," he told the court.

Witnesses describe blood, screams

Bain, 65, also faces three counts of attempted murder, as well as arson and possession of an incendiary device for the attack.

On Monday, the court heard from several other stagehands who testified they were outside with Blanchette when a gunman approached.

They told the jury about hearing a loud bang, then seeing a man with a gun. The stagehands recalled how they fled after they saw blood and heard screams.

Many of them described the gunman as a white male who was wearing a ski mask.

The trial began last Thursday and is expected to take between six and eight weeks.