Testimony in murder trial continues

Trial continues in murder of former North Okanagan resident, Brittney Irving

  • Sep. 22, 2013 10:00 a.m.

Cheryl Wierda

For Black Press

When Brittney Irving didn’t respond to text messages on April 6, 2010, confirming when she would pay marijuana broker David Osborne around $10,000 for the approximately four pounds of marijuana he gave to her for a buyer, he testified he called Joelon Verma, the man now accused of killing Irving.

Osborne testified Thursday that he gave Irving, who was raised in the North Okanagan, some marijuana that she intended to use for an order she was filling at noon on April 6.

An hour later she said via text message that she was waiting for another broker and it would be another hour before she could bring him the money that was owed for the marijuana.

“I believe it was over $10,000,” said Osborne.

By 2:30 p.m., he began texting again, first asking “how you making out?”

He repeatedly texted her over the next hour, with his last text asking: “What the f—, dude??????”

“I was getting very concerned,” he testified.

Osborne said he then called Verma and asked if he knew where “the girl we were with the other day” was.

A week before Irving’s disappearance, Osborne said he had a “chance” meeting with Verma and Irving, who he both knew to be marijuana brokers, at a tattoo shop in Rutland.

“The meeting was mostly “social,” he said.

Verma responded to Osborne’s query with “what girl?”

Later in the conversation, Verma said he had texted Irving earlier in the day, Osborne testified.

The next day, Verma and Osborne met, with Osborne telling Verma “I was out money and that I wanted it back.”

Verma asked if Osborne was “f—ed” because he lost the money, but Osborne told Verma he would “be fine.”

Osborne then told Verma he was “fed up with people stealing from people” and that he wanted to know who was responsible “because I’d like to deal with them,” Osborne recalls telling Verma.

Verma said “he’d see what he could find out,” Osborne testified.

He said he doesn’t believe he heard from Verma again.

Earlier in testimony Thursday, the court also heard from the night manager at the Days Inn, where Irving and her brother were staying when she disappeared.

After seeing video surveillance of the hotel lobby for the evening of April 5, Jay Shah identified a man pictured in the video as “Joey Verma.” The video also depicts them having a conversation, which Shah says was about whether Verma received the phone calls he transferred to room 108.

Shah says Verma told him the calls “were for Brittney.”

Verma is currently on trial for first degree murder in connection with the death of Irving.

She was last seen alive on April 6, 2010 and her body was found in a forested area outside Kelowna on April 26, 2010. The trial is expected to last six to seven weeks.