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The housemate of a former Ryerson student, murdered more than three years ago, told a jury that he saw the victim with a slit throat and her lower body engulfed in flames.
Farshad Badakhshan is accused of murdering 23-year-old Carina Petrache, who studied criminology at Ryerson. Badakhshan has pleaded not guilty and his defence team is contending that he is not criminally responsible because of a mental disorder.
Peter Charyna, who lived with Petrache and Badakhshan, took the witness stand today. He said a fire alarm in their home in the Annex jolted him awake on the morning of July 2, 2010. As he walked from his room to investigate, he found Petrache slowly walking toward him at the other end of the hallway.
Her shirt was covered in blood, her abdomen and right leg were engulfed in flames, and a thick red line was across her throat, Charyna told the jury.
Charyna said he originally thought the red line was some kind of jewelry, only to find out later from his housemates that it was blood.
Petrache then made her way to the communal kitchen, he said, where she collapsed to the floor. He and another housemate heard her say “keep him away from me.”
Outside the kitchen and down the hall stood Badakhshan, “groaning like a zombie,” and emergency services arrived soon after, Charyna told the jury.
The Crown contends that Badakhshan, 27 years old at the time, stabbed Petrache, slit her throat, and set fire to her and the Huron Street residence. He appeared in court today in a wheelchair, severe scarring from the fire evident across his face and scalp.
The court heard earlier in the trial that Petrache died of her neck wounds along with severe burns, which covered more than half of her body.
The trial continues tomorrow.
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