Court hears testimony as murder trial for death of former wrestler gets underway
Published Monday, September 26, 2011 4:23PM CST
A murder trial for the death of a former professional wrestler started in Winnipeg on Monday.
Ivan Radocaj, 43, was found killed in his home near Inwood in September 2007.
RCMP said he died of blunt-force trauma. He was allegedly beaten with crowbars.
Radocaj, who stood six-feet-eight-inches tall, previously wrestled under the name the Croatian Giant.
His ex-wife, Melody Sanford, is one of six people originally charged. She is accused of orchestrating the killing.
Sandford and her friend Rita Cushnie and her son Donald Richard have all pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder.
In court Monday, an RCMP identification officer testified that Sanford's fingerprints were found on a notebook with sketches of the floor plan to Radocaj's home inside it.
More than a dozen people are expected to testify for the Crown. On Monday, a friend of the couple told court that Sanford didn't want to get married and wore black to the ceremony.
Another of Sanford's friends is expected to describe how she planned to hire a hitman.
The Crown's key witness will be Timothy Richard, a cousin of two of the accused. Jurors were told Timothy Richard was present when suspects allegedly discussed the murder plan.
Along with forensic evidence, phone records and videotaped interviews with the accused are expected to be shown in court.
The trial is set to last three weeks.
- with a report from CTV's Stacey Ashley