First person at murder scene testifies during Denecho King trial

The first person at the bloody scene of a fatal attack in Yellowknife testified Wednesday in the murder trial of Denecho King.

King is on trial for murdering one man and attempting to murder another in 2014

Denecho King is accused of murdering John Wifladt and seriously injuring Colin Digness. (Yellowknife RCMP)

The first person at the bloody scene of a fatal attack in Yellowknife testified Wednesday in the murder trial of Denecho King.

King, 25, is accused of murdering one man and attempting to murder another in a Sundridge Apartments unit in the early hours of Dec. 14, 2014.

A couple who lived in the apartment below testified they were awoken at about 4 a.m. that morning by loud thumps and blaring heavy metal music from the apartment directly above theirs.

Both testified via closed circuit TV. The judge had allowed that after hearing from the prosecutor that the couple were worried about being targeted by King's family and friends. CBC is not identifying them.

The man said it wasn't unusual to hear loud music from the apartment above, which was occupied by Colin Digness. He said Digness partied often and he had gone up there in the past to ask him to turn down his music.

The man said he was only half awake the first time he went up to ask Digness to turn the music down. He said while climbing the stairs he thought he heard the door to the outside at the bottom of the stairs click shut.

'I just saw blood'

When he arrived at Digness' apartment, the door was open.

"I just saw blood," he said of the scene.

He said Digness' face was covered in blood. He was in a sitting position with an ornamental sword the man had seen in his apartment during previous visits beneath him. He was trying to pull himself up but could not.

Another man who he didn't know lay on his stomach, but was still alive. "You could see his chest go up and down," he testified.

As the man described the scene, members of John Wifladt's family, who have been sitting through each day of the trial, wept and comforted one another.

Wifladt was the man laying on his stomach on the floor. He later died in hospital from wounds he suffered during the attack. Digness survived after being medevaced to Edmonton and is expected to testify.

'Too much blood'

King sat beside his lawyer alternately watching the testimony on one of two big screens set up at the front of the courtroom and writing on a yellow notepad. He has been wearing leg shackles during the trial.

King escaped from the North Slave Correctional Centre 15 months after being charged in connection with the attack. Police arrested him in Yellowknife three days after his escape.

The man said he went back to his apartment and called the police, then returned to Digness's apartment. He went in to turn down the music blaring from tower speakers. He said he called Digness by name but he did not respond.

Asked if he saw any injuries on his neighbour, he replied, "He had a gash on his head. I'm not sure. There was too much blood."

The man's partner testified she had been woken earlier that night by a knock on her door. She said she looked through the peephole of the door and saw Denecho King — who both she and her partner knew.

She said King asked for her partner. She said she told him through the door her partner was busy tending to their child. She said King stood at the door for about a minute before walking away.

The trial continues tomorrow and is expected to last for another two weeks.