A man has testified at his murder trial that he no longer believes in conspiracies about aliens, 5G technology, poison-raining jet streams and COVID-19 as he did moments before stabbing to death a seven-year-old girl while her mother tried to save her.
“I thought I was going to be kidnapped [by aliens] or was abducted,” said David Moss, 36, who is seeking a ruling that he is not criminally responsible for second-degree murder in the May 2020 murder of Bella Rose Desrosiers.
“When you had visions of being abducted by an alien, do you believe that today?” asked defense attorney Rod Gregory.
“To be honest, no,” Moss replied Friday during his trial before judge alone in the Court of Queen’s Bench in Edmonton.
Mr. Moss testified that he grew up in a home of sexual, physical and verbal abuse in Holden, Alberta. He said his parents started giving him sips of alcohol when he was about nine years old and taught him spirituality. He also regularly smoked marijuana growing up, he said.
He was kicked out of school after grade 10, he told the court, and moved to Edmonton when he was 17. After someone threw a rock at his head and broke his scalp, he couldn’t speak properly and started having memory problems, he said. .
A year after the injury, he met his wife and they had four children together, he testified. He said he suffered from anxiety and was prescribed medication in 2019 for the voices he was hearing, but didn’t take much.
In March 2020, after the COVID-19 pandemic forced him to close his tattoo shop, his belief in conspiracies and a spiritual awakening intensified, Moss said.
“It was all an illusion, I believed,” he told the court. “I just thought I was awake and everyone was sleeping. They weren’t on a spiritual journey.”
It was then that Mr. Moss began posting on social media that COVID-19 vaccines contained microchips.
Prior to Mr. Moss’ testimony, his attorney played videos in court of Mr. Moss banging his head against his cell bed while in police custody. Officers entered the bloody room and took him away.
A clip was also released of Mr Moss attacking a healthcare worker. He strangled her as a guard punched him repeatedly before he let go.
The trial has already heard Mr Moss’ ex-wife and her sister explain how her mental health took an extreme and bizarre turn days before Bella’s throat was slit with scissors.
Mr. Moss was a new friend of the girl’s mother, Melissa Desrosiers, and was staying with her so she could take him to the hospital to get help for the suicidal thoughts he had expressed that that day.
The court was told Ms Desrosiers picked up Bella and her younger sister from their aunt and arrived with Mr Moss at her home.
While he was taking his shower, Mrs. Desrosiers took her daughters to their bedroom for the night. Their aunt had to babysit while Ms. Desrosiers took Mr. Moss to the hospital.
The court heard that Ms Desrosiers was about to kiss Bella goodnight when Mr Moss, wearing only shorts, appeared in the doorway. He was holding a pair of scissors he had retrieved from a kitchen drawer and used to carry out the attack.
Earlier in the day, Mr Moss had told his wife, Tracy Couture-Strarosta, that he wanted to hurt her, kill himself and had sexually assaulted a young cousin.
Ms. Couture-Strarosta testified that she called the Edmonton police and asked them to take her somewhere. An emergency response team assessed him and scheduled another meeting for 4:30 p.m. that day, but he never attended.
Mr. Moss’ sister, Apryl Pfunder, testified that her brother told her a day or two before Bella’s death that he intended to harm her four children.
She said he also told her that he saw spirits, demons, and a little girl waving at her; and that he had not eaten or slept for five days because he wanted to remain in a spirit world.
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