Borden obsessed, witness says

| 20/07/2014

(CNS): Tracy Watler, the first witness in the trial of Brian Emmanuel Borden and David Joseph Tamasa for the murder of Robert Macford Bush on 13 September 2011, told the court Friday how Borden had on several occasions asked her to set up circumstances where he could kill Bush. While he was still in prison and in the months between his release on 5 October 2010 and the night of the shooting, he constantly asked about him to the point where, Watler said, he appeared obsessed with Bush.

Watler (24) said that she had met Borden when she was about 14 or 15 and they had had an intimate relationship when she was about 16. Sometime while Borden was still in prison they had resumed their friendship and she had started to visit him regularly. During this time they would talk often on unmonitored cell phones and, she told the court, he mentioned Bush during almost every phone call and asked where he was.

She said that Borden asked her three or four times if she would help him to “set up” Bush when he got out, which she took to mean help Borden to kill him by taking him to a particular location.

On one occasion, Watler said, she was on the phone to Borden while she was with Bush, who was having an argument with his then girlfriend. “Brian asked me to tell Robert that when he got out of prison he was going to kill him,” she said. But when she relayed this message to Bush, he just walked off with a grin, she said. “I don’t think he took me seriously.”

After Borden was released from prison their relationship had become intimate for about a month, she said, but was adamant under cross-examination that she had been the one to break up this relationship and, far from being jealous when he began seeing someone else, had in fact been relieved.

Watler said she was also friends with Robert Bush, the victim, and he had told her that he was in a sexual relationship with Mayra Ebanks. Around the same time Brian Borden also told her that he was having sex with Ebanks, she said.

Around the end of 2010 and the beginning of 2011 Watler went to live with a relative whose boyfriend was a friend of Bush. Borden was in favour of her going to live there and she told the court that she understood why: it was because she would be close to the two men.

In July 2011, she said, she spoke to Borden every day and once or twice he asked if he could sleep with her, and she believed this was because he knew that Bush slept on the couch if he had had too much to drink. Borden had told her, she said, that it would be easy to kill him. She said he used to call if he knew Bush was at the house and would ask her to let him know when he left.

One night, Watler said, after she had taken the garbage out, he called her and asked her why she was taking the garbage out so late. “You watching me, or what?” she asked him. He asked her to tell her when Bush, who was sleeping there that night, was leaving but instead she turned her phone off. In the morning there were about four or five missed calls from Borden, she said, and when he called her again late that morning he told her, “You made the mosquitoes bite me up,” which made her believe that he had been outside the house all night waiting.

Once, when Bush was sleeping on the couch, Borden had asked her if she could open the window so he could shoot him. It was said in a joking way, Watler said, but she thought that he was serious and told him she didn’t know the code for the alarm on the window.

About a week before Bush’s murder, around the time of her birthday, which is 5 August, Watler was celebrating at a nightclub when Borden called her, she told the court. She thought that he asked her if Bush and his friend were drinking at her apartment.

“I thought it was a question but he said, ‘I’m not asking you, I’m telling you that they are there.’ He asked me if I could let him know when I get home if he was still there,” she said. Watler said she told him she would but in fact she had no intention of going home that night. The next morning she found she had a number of missed calls from Borden and later he asked her why she hadn’t called him.

The trial continues in Grand Court Monday morning.

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