Dafonte Miller fends off questions about actions on night he was severely beaten
Theriault brothers say Miller was wielding a pipe during the altercation
During his final day of testimony at the trial of two men accused of beating him with a metal pipe, Dafonte Miller fended off questions about his character, credibility and actions on the night he was allegedly attacked.
Miller had spent three days giving his account of the incident before wrapping up his testimony on Friday under cross-examination by the defence.
"I feel like I can breathe a little bit better … that's pretty much it," he told CBC Toronto after leaving the courthouse in Oshawa, Ont..
Michael Theriault, an officer with Toronto police 42 division, and his brother Christian Theriault have been charged with one count each of aggravated assault and obstructing justice. The altercation happened on Dec. 28, 2016 in a residential area of Whitby, Ont, while Theriault was off duty.
Both men have pleaded not guilty to all charges in Ontario Superior Court.
Miller, who was 19 at the time, said the Theriault brothers repeatedly struck him with a metal pipe, and that he was unable to fight back. Miller's left eye was badly damaged and had to be removed.
During the final day of Miller's testimony, Michael Theriault's lawyer, Michael Lacy, questioned Miller about where the pipe came from during the altercation.
"You deny that you're the one who grabbed a pipe?" Lacy asked.
"Yes, sir," Miller responded.
"You're not the one using the pipe as a weapon?" followed Lacy.
"No, sir," Miller said
The Theriault brothers previously said that Miller was the one wielding the pipe. They say it started after they caught Miller breaking into their parents' truck.
Lacy also suggested that Miller was caught stealing before the fight broke out. Again, Miller explicitly rebuffed the suggestion.
The judge-alone case is being heard by Justice Joseph Di Luca.
Defence shows video from unrelated incident
At the end of cross-examination, Lacy brought up an unrelated incident from May 2018, in which Miller allegedly made a threatening gesture toward a convenience store owner.
"I'm going to suggest, sir, that you gesture with your hand in a gun-like fashion," Lacy said, after playing the security video of the incident to the court.
Miller denied making a threat to the store owner. He said the gesture was related to a discussion about a recent shooting.
"I don't even make those types of gestures to the people that beat up my eye," Miller said.
In addition to the injured eye, Miller suffered a broken nose, jaw and wrist. His remaining eye is also damaged.
The defence also suggested that the initial claim that Miller suffered a back injury may not have been legitimate. A medical expert previously testified that Miller did not appear to have suffered an injury to that part of his body, despite his complaints of pain.
At the end of his testimony, Miller told reporters he didn't mind being in the same room as the two men accused of beating him.
"I didn't let it bother me as much as people might think," he said outside court.
"I didn't look at them."
With files from Lorenda Reddekopp