Claims by suspected double dog killer John Richard Geick that he was “brainwashed” by his ex-wife into admitting he abused the animals is “utterly absurd,” a prosecutor said Monday.
Crown lawyer Rose Greenwood said the evidence was clear Geick beat both his then-common-law spouse’s basset hound and chihuahua two days apart in February 2019.
The basset hound, Sophie, was discovered dead in the couple’s southwest Calgary home on Feb. 15, while Tyler, a two-kilogram chihuahua, was beaten so badly it had to be euthanized on Feb. 17.
Defence lawyer Efrayim Moldofsky suggested it was Geick’s former wife who was responsible for the deaths, arguing Joanna Smith convinced his emotionally vulnerable client to take responsibility for the crimes.
But Greenwood responded it was Geick who was the manipulator in their relationship, noting he made Smith feel she was crazy for initially questioning whether he was responsible for Sophie’s injuries.
The prosecutor noted that while Smith asked Geick if he had kicked the dogs — something he later told police he did to Tyler — the accused was able to provide other details, such as he tried to muzzle the dog with electrical tape, that were never suggested to him.
“Mr. Geick says this is all a result of Joanna Smith brainwashing him. . . The Crown’s position is that this is utterly absurd,” Greenwood told Justice Bernette Ho.
She said Smith’s emotional evidence belied the defence suggestion she was manipulating the accused into taking blame for the deaths of the dogs.
“Joanna Smith’s evidence did not reveal the controlling abusive wife that Mr. Geick would like this court to believe,” Greenwood said.
“She comes across as a shrinking violet, distraught by the sudden deaths of her two dogs, struggling to wrap her mind around the fact that her husband, father to her son, someone who she testified that she loved (did this).”
Moldofsky disputed the characterization of Smith as someone who could not control someone else: “She’s not a shrinking violet, or anything of that nature, but rather a very dishonest, non-credible, unreliable witness.”
Moldofsky suggested his client was emotionally vulnerable and was willing to say anything in an attempt to keep his family whole.
“The confession was induced and was fed to him. It was practically extorted out of him by both the police and her.”
The lawyer at one time mentioned to Ho there was another “prime suspect,” leading the judge to ask, who?
“I wasn’t planning on naming her, but I think Ms. Smith is the, obviously, the other prime suspect.”
Ho will hand down her verdict on March 16.
On Twitter: @KMartinCourts