I’m working on a new ebook about Dellen Millard and the murders of Tim Bosma, Laura Babcock and Wayne Millard, which I hope to publish next month. Here’s the preface as it now stands:
This ebook (which is really an e-very-long-magazine-article) is the story of Dellen Millard so far. At the time of writing, there is a lot that remains unknown to the public about the accused triple murderer and his alleged accomplice and friend, Mark Smich. Many of the key facts won’t start to come to light or, for legal reasons, can’t be published until the pair’s first trial, for the murder of Tim Bosma, gets underway. And due to the inexplicable slowness of the Canadian legal system that likely won’t happen until 2015.
Yet, at the same time, there is a lot that we do know already about Millard and Smich, and that hasn’t ever been brought together in one place. On top of that, in the year and a half I’ve spent reporting on the murders of Tim Bosma, Laura Babcock and Wayne Millard, I have uncovered quite a bit of new information that I haven’t had the right opportunity to publish until now. Mostly, I would find a snippet here, a snippet there, never quite enough for an entire article, but all interesting pieces to the Dellen Millard puzzle.
Then, in late August, I had a big find — a batch of jailhouse letters, written by Millard to family and friends over a period ranging from June 2013 to March of this year when the correspondence seems to have abruptly stopped. I’ve included many excerpts from these letters in this ebook and I think they offer real insights into the mind of Dellen Millard.
A lot of the time, he seems calm and resigned to his situation, but on other occasions, he flares up in anger. He writes about prison life and, in my opinion, seems obsessed with death, but he also discusses topics like fashion, his battles to stay trim, and what he’s reading in jail. In the excerpt below, you can see that, apart from the terrible spelling, Millard’s a much better writer in his letters than he was in the strange and stilted obit he wrote when his father Wayne died:
Obama was in south (sic) Africa recently. There was a photo of him standing in Nelson Mandela’s cell. It looked awfly (sic) familiar…
Yea I do yoga in the cell. I’m locked in twenty three and a half hours a day. I’m let out only to meet with my lawyer, or take a shower. It’s a little bigger than Mandela’s; about five by eleven, top and bottom bunk, steel toilet and sink, door on one end, windows on the other. Yoga’s very
well suited to the narrow space. I also jump and run in place as my ‘cardio’. Some of the other prisoners joke there’s a kangaroo in here with me. This entire range is on constant lockup, so we never interact, just yell at one another from behind cell doors. It’s not especially noisy, but sound trickles in from other parts of the jail. A guard on the phone, a movie being played on a far away range, the quick rush of footsteps followed by dull thuds as someone gets beat up on another floor, there’s a fire alarm almost every day. Still there’s plenty of calm to read and draw during the day. At night someone is often upset about something and will yell and bang as retalliation (sic). The expression is ‘Oh yea?! Well noone’s sleeping tonight!’ The first few nights were especially difficult, but now I barely notice.
And what of Mark Smich, Millard’s homely sidekick whose story has gotten only a fraction of the attention paid to his friend’s? A petty criminal who dressed in gangsta style before switching to an orange jumpsuit, Smich has a devoted coterie of friends who consistently and somewhat curiously use the exact same word to describe him — “sweet.” Also, in what’s probably an unintentional homage to Breaking Bad, these friends often mention how Smich was a great “family” guy. It’s hard sometimes, when listening to them, not to feel that they’re reading from the script of what they think they’re supposed to say when their buddy gets arrested.
At this point, I want to emphasize that both Millard and Smich have pleaded not guilty to all the charges against them, and none of the allegations have been proven in court. Their respective attorneys have stated repeatedly that they will vigorously defend their clients. Before the law, Dellen Millard and Mark Smich are absolutely 100% innocent until proven guilty.
In the not-so-distant, pre-internet past, it would not have been possible to write a book like this. I would have had to sit on much of this information and then publish it post-trial, but the advent of the ebook makes it possible — with certain legal constraints — to tell you the story so far and to update you as new developments emerge.
If you’re interested, I would also love it if you would join in the ongoing discussion and contribute your thoughts on my website www.annrbrocklehurst.com where I continue to follow and report on the murders of Tim Bosma, Laura Babcock and Wayne Millard. If you prefer you can subscribe to my newsletter and receive updates when news breaks. Or you can do both.
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