High drama played out in Hull court yesterday as Raymond Turmel wrapped
up his defence with the testimony of his disabled wife.

Denise Beaudoin could only pronounce her name while being sworn in before
she burst into uncontrollable sobs.

"Fifty-six," she finally managed when asked her age.

Beaudoin was called to her husband's trial to explain her numerous pains
and problems with depression. Turmel, 49, is accused of possessing and
cultivating marijuana with the intent to traffic.

Several witnesses, including Beaudoin, told the court that Turmel provided
the marijuana to ease their suffering.

The court heard how Beaudoin had been in a car accident in 1989 and
hospitalized for three months as a result.

"I took a lot of medication for pain and they all had side effects," she
told the court.

"I would vomit, get dizzy and throw up too," Beaudoin continued through a
stream of tears. "It's really bad. I've always got pain."

Beaudoin said she met Turmel during the ice storm of 1998 when the two
lived on the same block. Almost immediately, she said, she began taking
marijuana to ease her pain. "The only thing that helps is smoking
marijuana," Beaudoin said.

Asked by the Crown how much marijuana she would smoke before her husband
was arrested in July 2000 and his plants seized, Beaudoin became angry,
insisting she could not estimate the quantity.

Pressed by the judge, Beaudoin guessed she probably smoked about five or
six joints a day.

Beaudoin's physician, Dr. Carole Williams, also burst into tears when sworn
in yesterday. The jury had already been told that Williams' brother had
been killed about 10 years ago and the return to court prompted painful
memories. Williams testified that Beaudoin insisted she felt better when
smoking marijuana.

Final arguments are expected on Monday.


Newshawk: puff_tuff
Pubdate: Thursday, November 29, 2001
Source: Ottawa Sun (CN ON)
Website: http://www.fyiottawa.com/ottsun.shtml
Address: 380 Hunt Club Rd., Ottawa, Ontario, K1G 5H7
Contact: oped@ott.sunpub.com
Copyright: 2001, Canoe Limited Partnership
Forum: http://www.canoe.ca/Chat/home.html
Author: Nathalie Trepanier