Watch May 23 video above, as 25-year-old Mark Smich appears in a Hamilton court to face charges of first degree murder. Mark Carcasole reports.
TORONTO – Mark Smich was formally charged with first degree murder Thursday morning in connection with the death of Tim Bosma.
Bosma disappeared after taking two men – who police allege to be Smich and Dellen Millard – on a test drive of his 2007 Dodge Ram pickup truck.
Smich was apprehended by police Wednesday morning while walking along Dorval Drive north of Wyecroft Road in Oakville.
When Smich was being arrested in Oakville, hundreds of people were beginning to gather for Bosma’s memorial in Hamilton.
Global News has learned that Smich, 25, has a long history with the justice system.
He was convicted of drug possession in 2005 and 2006, for failing to comply twice in 2006 and impaired driving in 2009.
He is also facing a charge of mischief for allegedly spray-painting a highway overpass.
On Wednesday, a witness to the search described military-like ETF officers coming in and out of Smich’s Oakville home where he lives with his mother.
“They looked like soldiers, like cops with helmets and I guess bullet proof jackets, and boots and submachine guns coming in and out of the house,” Michael Geary told Global News.
Fred James, who has lived on the street since 1988, was a neighbour to Smich who he said moved to Oakville approximately 5 years ago with his mother and two sisters. Smich’s two sisters have since moved out, he added.
He added that he didn’t know Smich well but occasionally “traded niceties” while mowing their lawns or shovelling their driveways.
James said he had a close relationship with the previous owners of Smich’s home but said the Smich family generally kept to themselves.
Nikki Ramsden grew up just down the street from Smich. She said she used to deliver newspapers to the family but didn’t know them well.
“I wouldn’t recognize him but I always saw them out on the porch just smoking and hanging out,” she said. “I guess you don’t really know your neighbours.”
But despite the serious charges the 25-year-old Oakville man faces, one of his friends broke down in tears and said he is “an amazing person.”
“He’s a sweetheart, he’ll do anything for you. He’s just a really good person,” said Cora Dacunha, adding that she set him up with his girlfriend before she continued crying.
Watch Dacunha’s reaction to news of Smich’s charges on May 22 below:
But that “sweetheart” is now facing murder charges, along with 27-year-old aviation company heir Dellen Millard.
Hamilton Police were previously searching two properties in the Waterloo area – at least one hangar at Waterloo International Airport and farm land in Ayr, Ont. – in connection with the investigation.
An incinerator was found on Millard’s farmland. While police have not confirmed where Bosma’s body was found in the Waterloo area, they did note it was badly burned.
© Shaw Media, 2013