A courtroom at the Edmonton Law Courts building, in Edmonton on June 28, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

A courtroom at the Edmonton Law Courts building, in Edmonton on June 28, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

Medical examiner testifies woman suffered horrific injury at Edmonton hotel

Cindy Gladue was found dead in a hotel bathtub

A medical examiner told an Edmonton jury Tuesday that he has never seen such a severe injury as the one inflicted on Cindy Gladue, a woman found dead in a hotel bathtub.

Dr. Graeme Dowling, a former chief medical examiner of Alberta, testified over a video conference call on the second day of the manslaughter trial of Bradley Barton.

The 52-year-old long-haul truck driver from Ontario is accused of killing Gladue, a 36-year-old Metis and Cree mother, at the Yellowhead Inn in June of 2011.

This is the second trial for Barton in relation to Gladue’s death. Following his first trial in 2015, which sparked rallies and calls for justice for Indigenous women, the case ended up before the Supreme Court of Canada. It ordered in 2019 that Barton be retried.

GRAPHIC WARNING: The following details may disturb some readers.

Dowling testified that out of about 6,000 autopsies he has performed, he had not before seen the type of injury that Gladue suffered to the right side of her vaginal wall.

He said it was caused by blunt force trauma.

“I want to emphasize to the ladies and gentlemen of the jury that the force to me would be considerable,” Dowling said.

“A blunt object produced the defect, not just in the vagina wall, but through and through.”

The wound stretched 11 centimetres, Dowling said. He added that Gladue also had cuts and scrapes all over her body.

At one point during the doctor’s testimony, Gladue’s mother, Donna McLeod, put her face in her hands. Another woman later helped her walk out of the courtroom.

Dowling is to take the witness stand again on Wednesday.

On Monday, Crown prosecutor Julie Snowdon said in her opening statement that Gladue died from blood loss due to a catastrophic wound.

Snowdon said Barton and Gladue had been drinking together the night before her body was found and security footage will show the two went to Barton’s room.

A police officer also testified there was blood nearly everywhere in the bathroom, and Gladue’s body was located in the tub.

Edmonton police Det. Nancy Ho testified Tuesday that police searched through the hotel’s garbage and discovered a metal rod with a face towel, and the towel appeared to have blood spots.

However, defence lawyer Dino Bottos pointed out that Ho didn’t make a note of the blood-stained towel in her report.

Ho said police also found a note that had “Brad,” along with the room number 139 and a phone number with an Ontario area code.

The trial is to last about seven weeks.

___

This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

Fakiha Baig, The Canadian Press

Alberta

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Stettler sign
Stettler Community Builders initiaitve continues to take shape

Project will honour Stettler citizens who were influential in the town’s history

Alberta chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said the province still hopes to bring the hospitalization number down before relaxing restrictions. (photography by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
14 new deaths, 366 new COVID-19 cases in Alberta

Province nearing 100K COVID-19 vaccine doses administered

Art Kempf, originally from the Stettler area but now living in Lacombe, is pictured here with his late wife Lillian. Art’s 100th birthday is coming up on Feb. 22nd.
photo submitted
Former Stettler area resident Art Kempf will be celebrating a very special day next month

Kempf, now a Lacombe resident, marks his 100th birthday on Feb. 22nd

photo courtesy of Lara Angus
Kate Syson, Sharon Fischer and Allan King pose with the Zamboni on Stettler’s newest skating spot.
photo courtesy of Lara Angus
Stettler Elementary leadership take the Zamboni for a spin

Sharon Fischer and Kate Syson lend a hand for Stettler’s new skating spot

Terrance Josephson of the Princeton Posse, at left, and Tyson Conroy of the Summerland Steam clash during a Junior B hockey game at the Summerland Arena in the early spring of 2020. (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
QUIZ: How much do you know about hockey?

Test your knowledge of Canada’s national winter sport

(Photo submitted)
Central Alberta researchers recognized for studies in agricultural sciences

Jessica Sperber of Ponoka and David MacTaggart of Lacombe awarded prestigious scholarship

FILE – Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau delivers his opening remarks at a news conference outside Rideau cottage in Ottawa, Tuesday, January 19, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine CEO ‘very, very clear’ that Canada’s contracts will be honoured: Trudeau

Trudeau says he spoke to Moderna CEO on the morning of Jan. 26

A ground worker wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 unloads lobsters from a WestJet Airlines flight at Vancouver International Airport, in Richmond, B.C., on Thursday, January 21, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Trudeau teases stricter travel measures; Canadians flying to U.S. now need COVID test

Prime minister says measures need to not hurt imports and essential trade

(Photo submitted)
Ponoka RCMP receives new police puppy trainee

Detachment says goodbye to ‘Maja’ and welcomes ‘Neutron’

'The Coronavirus Isn't Scary' by Kristy Walker.
Sylvan Lake author pens first children’s book about COVID-19

“The Coronavirus Isn’t Scary” by Kristy Walker teaches children to take care of themselves

Whistle Stop Cafe owner Christopher Scott and his sister Melodie are serving sit-down customers in their Mirror diner to protest health restrictions that they say are unfair to restaurants and other small businesses. (Photo by Paul Cowley/Advocate staff)
Central Alberta restaurant owner defies health restrictions by serving diners

Whistle Stop Cafe owner says pandemic restrictions unfair to restaurants and small businesses

The Northwest Territories flag flies on a flagpole in Ottawa on July 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Alberta man charged with threatening Northwest Territories public health officer

Police did reveal the nature of the threats, but said it was concerning

A healthy volunteer receives an injection in this undated handout image provided by Providence Therapeutics. Human clinical trials have begun in Toronto for a proposed COVID-19 vaccine by a Canadian company. Providence Therapeutics of Calgary says 60 subjects will be monitored for 13 months, with the first results expected next month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Providence Therapeutics
*MANDATORY CREDIT*
Calgary company begins human clinical trials for its COVID-19 vaccine candidate

If successful, the vaccine could be released by the end of the year

Most Read