WARNING: This story contains graphic content that some readers might find disturbing. Discretion is advised.
An expert in digital forensic examinations presented graphic and disturbing evidence Monday afternoon in the triple murder trial of Douglas Garland.
Calgary Police Const. Doug Kraan specifically took the court through the findings of a forensic examination of a computer hard drive found hidden in the rafters of the basement of the Garland house.
Garland, 57, is charged with three counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of five-year-old Nathan O’Brien and his grandparents, Alvin and Kathy Liknes.
Kraan testified the user was obviously concerned about security and had taken steps to make sure it wasn’t compromised, yet it was not password protected.
Court heard the drive had multiple folders and subfolders containing everything from documents on fingerprinting and DNA to hypnosis and ADHD.
One, subtitled “impact,” included information about weapons such as blackjacks and brass knuckles and included images of “different applications of the Garrote technique,” Kraan said.
The jury was told that particular folder was last accessed June 23, 2014, just six days before Nathan and his grandparents disappeared.
There was also a folder created on “locksmithing” that included a “programming/operating guide” to the Schlage BE-365 lock – the same lock found on the Liknes home.
Midway through Kraan’s testimony, the judge presiding over the case warned the jury not to conclude from the disturbing evidence ahead that Garland is a person of bad character.
Moments later, the jury was shown multiple images retrieved of “adult baby diapering,” including adults in various restraints wearing diapers.
Next was a folder with the title “gore.”
The forensic expert said it was last accessed July 1, 2014, and contained 87 pictures that were also shown to the jury.
Kraan described the contents as graphic and said images “depicted dead or dismembered individuals.”
An autopsy manual and “Kill Without Joy: The Complete How to Kill Book” were also discovered on the drive.
“The professional killer is to be like a soldier or a cold warrior,” the document read as shown to the court.
Kraan testified he found 18 documents on the hard drive specifically about “murder or killing.”
He also detailed numerous documents on the drive relating to the companies owned by Alvin Liknes, and a pump he had patented.
Even in the recycle bin, Kraan discovered further evidence, including multiple photos of Kathy Liknes, and one of Alvin and Kathy Liknes together.
On the first day of the trial, the prosecution told the jury Garland meticulously researched murder and how to kill without emotion, as well as torture.
The Crown’s theory is Garland violently took the three victims from the Liknes home, then killed and dismembered them and destroyed their bodies.
Kraan will continue his testimony Tuesday.
Watch below: From Jan. 27: Global News reporter Nancy Hixt discusses the Douglas Garland murder trial before third week of testimony.
Read the latest tweets from Nancy Hixt below and scroll down to continue reading today’s article
Calgary Police Const. Oleg Seleznov said three computers were found in the Garland home. He said one of the computer towers had its hard drive removed, so it was not seized.
Seleznov said he specifically examined a Sony computer. After a review of emails, he said it appeared the primary user of the computer was Doug Garland from 2008 onward.
He went on to testify the two most common names for users on the computer’s email were “Douglas Garland” and different variations of the name “Matt Hartley.”
He was also questioned about Internet searches for Alvin Liknes.
“The user used Google search engine to conduct that search. And the user was using the search term Alvin Liknes Vecto,” Seleznov said.
The Crown’s theory is Garland violently removed the trio from their beds and took them to his parents farm, where they were killed and their bodies were destroyed.
Monday is the tenth day of testimony.
Watch below: Global’s ongoing coverage of Douglas Garland’s murder trial