A Crown attorney says a man who claims he wrongly spent 37 years in prison has “evolving explanations” and a “selective memory” of events surrounding the 1983 murder of a toddler.
Janet Dickie told the B.C. Court of Appeal today that Phillip Tallio has exaggerated some aspects of his testimony while giving different details about his whereabouts around the crime scene in Bella Coola on April 23, 1983.
Court has heard Tallio went to check on his 22-month-old cousin Delavina Mack in the middle of the night and found her dead in a relative’s home.
Dickie says part of Tallio’s testimony was extremely detailed including the colour and brand of the socks he was wearing that morning and that he never changed or removed any of his clothes before a police interview.
She says he was not wearing any socks when an officer spoke to him about five hours after the girl was found dead and that a pair of shorts seized from him had blood on them.
Dickie says Tallio’s pauses to her questions in court suggested he was trying to figure out favourable answers, but Justice S. David Frankel countered that someone slow to think of a response about what happened decades earlier is not necessarily hiding the truth.