It is impossible to determine how much of washer Mr. Turcotte drank before killing her children. But the Crown doubts the intoxicating effect of the product, and notes that the accused has concentrated 46 stab wounds to the chest and small elsewhere.
“He was not suffering from neuromuscular disorder. There were no blows to the arms, legs, and face of children, “argued the Crown Attorney René Verret Friday, showing the sketches contained in the reports of the pathologist, the witness Claude Rouillard . The latter, an expert in neuropharmacology, explained earlier, that ingestion of methanol, toxic substance contained in the washer, can cause muscle neuro, balance, motor skills and confusion if ingested in sufficient quantities. In fact, they are the same effects that the consumption of ethanol (alcohol consumable), but to a lesser degree. The question of Mr. Verret on the location of stab wounds was beyond the scope of competences of Mr. Rouillard, said the latter.
This professor and researcher at Laval University, brought as a witness by the defense, was there to witness the effects of methanol on the brain and the human metabolism. This he did in great length elsewhere, during his testimony. Methanol is a poison that can cause serious health problems and even death. With the amount of methanol that he had absorbed, Mr. Turcotte would have died if he had not been treated. Two witnesses have said: Mr. Rouillard, and forensic toxicologist Anne-Marie Faucher, who testified before him.
The Crown attacked the credibility of Mr. Rouillard Friday in against-examination. Mr. Rouillard admitted he showed for the first time in his life on methanol. He began to read about last September when the defense was contacted. It recognizes that the intoxicating effect of methanol was observed in mice. The scientific literature on the effects of methanol on humans is much rarer. Normal, since nobody would want to poison himself voluntarily for the purpose of a study.
From the rate of methanol content in the blood of Mr. Turcotte after the drama, (310 mg per 100 ml of blood at 12:27 February 21, 2009), Mr. Rouillard made retro calculations to assess its rate to different hours. But all this is only a hypothesis, since it is unknown how much, and whether Mr. Turcotte consumed once or repeatedly, between the 20 and 21 February 2009. He arrived home late post noon, February 20th, 2009, with her two children, Olivier five years, and Anne-Sophie, three.
At around 11 am 45 noon the following day, police found hidden under his bed, sick, filthy vomit and blood of its children. These were stabbed dead in their respective beds.
During her brief hospitalization at St. Jerome Hospital, Mr. Turcotte had initially lied about its use, saying taking Tylenol. He was finally admitted to a staff member he had drunk washer, “two liters to 20 hours yesterday.” In exchange for this information, he demanded that communicates the bicarbonates rate and ph his blood. These measures are important. Bicarbonates fight methanol. As for the pH of the blood, lowers the methanol.
Mr. Turcotte admits to killing her children, but it presents a defense of not criminally responsible. He testified for three days this week.
The trial continues Monday with a new witness.