The police officer who arrested a man accused of murdering a 13-year-old girl found dead in a Burnaby, B.C., park six years ago says no recording of the arrest exists because he forgot to switch on his recorder when a police car crashed into another vehicle at the scene
Burnaby RCMP Const. Jason Cutler told a B.C. Supreme Court jury that Ibrahim Ali was “co-operative and well behaved” when he was apprehended during the co-ordinated traffic stop on Sept. 7, 2018.
Cutler said he and Const. Bryce Sinclair were tasked by the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team with arresting Ali.
He said a “safe traffic stop” was performed but another police car collided with a civilian car before the arrest, causing him to forget to start recording, although he had placed the recorder in his vest.
The body of the girl, who cannot be identified under the terms of a publication ban, was found in Burnaby’s Central Park in July 2017, just hours after her mother reported her missing.
In May, Ali pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder.
RCMP officers did not use body cameras or dash cameras at the time of the arrest, Cutler said.
Despite forgetting to record the arrest, Cutler said it went smoothly and Ali was taken to the cells at the Burnaby RCMP detachment.
“Verbally and physically he was co-operative and well behaved,” he told the jury Wednesday.
Ali, who was 28 at the time of his arrest, has been in pretrial custody ever since.
Crown attorney Isobel Keeley said in an opening statement that the court would hear evidence showing the murder was random, but DNA results would prove Ali sexually assaulted her.
She said the evidence would show the girl was passing through a neighbourhood park when she was dragged off a pathway into the forest by Ali, sexually assaulted and strangled.
The defence has not yet told the jury its theory of events.