WARNING: This story contains details that some readers may find disturbing
A day after telling the jury he heard an Oak Bay father accused of murdering his daughters plead for death, a firefighter was grilled by the defence over whether that actually happened.
Andrew Berry has pleaded not guilty to two charges of second-degree murder in the stabbing deaths of his daughters, six-year-old Chloe and four-year-old Aubrey.
The court has heard their bodies were found in Berry’s apartment on Christmas Day 2017. Berry himself was found in the bathtub, with what Crown says were self-inflicted wounds.
Oak Bay firefighter Brad Trenholm testified Tuesday he was directed to the bathroom after arriving at the scene, where he found Berry still breathing and surrounded by several dolls floating in the water and blood on the floor.
“I thought I heard him say ‘kill me, kill me, just kill me,’” he told the court.
On Wednesday, defence counsel Kevin McCullough attempted to shed doubt on that crucial testimony.
WATCH: (Aired April 30) Firefighter testifies at trial of father accused of killing daughters
“If I suggest to you that Mr. Berry didn’t say those words, when you were in the bathroom the first time alone, would you agree with me that it’s possible that didn’t happen?” McCullough asked.
“All I can tell you is what my memories are,” Trenholm replied. “If they’re incorrect, that’s possible. Those are my memories.”
Trenholm told the jury his memories are “foggy” because it was a traumatic event that occurred 16 months ago.
Defence argued the firefighter’s uncertainty means Berry could have said “tried to kill me” or “don’t kill me,” attempting to bolster their theory that the real killer got away thanks to several mistakes made by police.
McCullough is also arguing Berry was treated as a suspect from the beginning instead of as a victim, accusing both police and firefighters of jumping to conclusions.
McCullough asked Trenholm why he told another firefighter, “I think this is the guy who did it.” His question was followed by a long pause from Trenholm before McCullough continued.
WATCH: (Aired April 24) Second witness called at trial for father accused of killing daughters
“No,” Trenholm replied. “I can’t deny anything I can’t remember.”
Trenholm admitted to McCullough Tuesday he didn’t know who had injured the girls or Berry.
Crown has told the jury the evidence will show Berry committed the murders and tried to commit suicide because he was depressed and in financial trouble, and therefore couldn’t support his kids.
The trial, now in its third week, has also heard from two police officers who attended the scene.
Defence says police made a critical mistake by leaving the crime scene unattended for about five minutes, leaving plenty of time for the real killer to escape.
The trial is expected to last roughly three months.