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Paramedic on stand at murder trial of stepmother in killing of 7-year-old Quebec girl

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TROIS-RIVIÈRES, Que. — A paramedic who went to the home of a seven-year-old Granby, Que., girl who died in April 2019 told a trial Tuesday the girl was not breathing and didn't have a pulse when she arrived.

Paramedic Kariane Royer was testifying at the murder trial of the child's stepmother at the courthouse in Trois-Rivières, Que.

The girl was found in critical condition in her family home in Granby, about 80 kilometres east of Montreal, on April 29, 2019, and died a day later in hospital.

Royer told the court she had been dispatched with her partner on a high priority call as cardiorespiratory arrest had been reported.

The 38-year-old stepmother, whose identity is protected by a publication ban, is charged with second-degree murder and forcible confinement of the young victim, who also cannot be named.

Arriving four minutes after receiving the call, Royer recounted entering the home and heading straight to the room where the child was. She said the room was hot, humid and very dark, describing walking inside as stepping into a "wall of heat."

"The girl was naked in a puddle of urine," she testified, adding the youngster was "very thin" and had "greyish skin."

The child had compression marks on her chest and thighs and was hot and sweaty to the touch.

Royer said there was no bed or mattress in the room and the furniture was piled up. “It didn't seem like a bedroom,” she said.

A police officer who had arrived first and started resuscitation manoeuvres told Royer the girl had no pulse, which was confirmed when the child was connected to a monitor. "It was a straight line," Royer said. Despite a few minutes of resuscitation, the child still had no pulse and was rushed to hospital in an ambulance.

On Monday, the trial heard 911 calls and testimony from the first police officers to arrive at the scene.

The Crown also told the jury that it intends to show that the 7-year-old girl had been wrapped in tape before she was discovered. The evidence presented in court included a photo showing a mass of plastic, which appears to be adhesive tape, and scissors beside the child.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 19, 2021.

The Canadian Press