Regardless of doubts surrounding the question of whether Lisa Batstone understood the ramifications of killing her daughter Teagan, prosecutors in the second-degree murder trial say it’s clear that the death of the eight-year-old was what the South Surrey mother intended when she smothered the youngster in her sleep more than four years ago.
In arguing the point Tuesday in B.C. Supreme Court, prosecutors pointed to Batstone’s own words: notes that read “I’m so sorry” and “you win Gabe, you broke me,” and a four-page letter with phrases that included, “I couldn’t imagine leaving here and leaving her to him.”
The statements were found at Batstone’s home during the investigation into Teagan’s death.
Back in court today for the 2nd degree murder trial of South Surrey's Lisa Batstone. Defence wrapping up submissions by talking about Batstone's stressors, mental state, depression and borderline personality traits. More on that here: https://t.co/Ou2bdj6aDp
— Aaron Hinks (@aaron_hinks) January 22, 2019
Batstone is charged with second-degree murder in connection with the death of the Rosemary Heights Elementary student, whose body was found shortly after noon on Dec. 10, 2014, in the trunk of a vehicle that became stuck in a cul-de-sac off of Crescent Road.
The court heard during trial that Batstone was found curled up with her daughter’s body.
The month after Teagan’s death – after a court-ordered “fitness assessment” – her mother was deemed fit to stand trial on the murder charge, however, the proceedings were delayed multiple times over the years.
Court proceedings finally got underway in early October. Three days set aside for closing submissions began this week.
Defence counsel argued Monday that Batstone – due to her level of intoxication at the time of Teagan’s death, along with other stressors – didn’t have the intent that would warrant a second-degree murder charge, and submitted that a charge of manslaughter was more appropriate.
But Crown said the notes and letter, along with texts and emails sent by Batstone both before and after the murder, suggest otherwise. While there may have been some executive-function impairment, the messages were all coherent, structured sentences, the court heard.
Other points that prosecutors say support the argument that Batstone wanted to kill Teagan include that she never called 911, and that Teagan’s body had bruises, which “could have been caused by Teagan struggling,” the court heard.
More to come…