The first of two former associates of Jamie Bacon has taken the stand against him. The man, who can only be identified as AB, said he was a good friend of Bacon’s, as well as a business partner in the drug trade.
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When Jamie Bacon drew his finger across his throat after giving a hand signal for his pal Dennis Karbovanec, his former drug trafficking associate says he knew what Bacon wanted done.
The associate, who can only be identified as AB due to a publication ban, testified in B.C. Supreme Court on Thursday that Bacon’s cryptic hand gestures in December 2008 were telling him that Karbovanec had to be killed.
And within weeks, on New Year’s Eve 2008, AB and another associate who can be identified only as CD met Karbovanec at a park in Mission in an attempt to shoot him on Bacon’s orders, AB told jurors and Justice Catherine Wedge.
Bacon is charged with one count of counselling someone to commit murder for his alleged role in the unsuccessful attempt on Karbovanec’s life.
The shooting happened on a dead-end street called Bench Ave. where the group had driven in two cars that night on the pretense of preparing to rob a nearby drug house, AB said.
Once at the location, AB was standing next to Karbovanec showing him drawings of the target house when CD got out of one of the vehicles “and starts firing,” AB testified.
“I am kind of, like, shocked that he is firing because I am standing right next to Dennis when he starts shooting,” he said. “He lets off a few shots, the gun jams, the clip drops out. He quickly sticks another clip in, racks the gun back, which is cocking the gun, so is getting another bullet in the chamber and then starts firing.”
AB said eight to 10 shots were fired in total, but that Karbovanec managed to escape by jumping into some nearby bushes and running through a ravine.
AB said Bacon ordered the 2008 hit because he believed Karbovanec was a “scumbag” who had “done all kinds of terrible things and was bringing a lot of heat — unwanted police attention to all of us.”
AB said he agreed to be part of the murder plot even though it “caught me off guard” when Bacon said he wanted Karbovanec dead.
AB said he made it clear to Bacon that he wouldn’t be the actual shooter, although he agreed to help with the murder. “I am not the type of guy to kill somebody,” he testified.
He said Bacon was also concerned that Karbovanec might “be working with the police or possibly informing the police about some things, and was bringing unwanted negative police attention.”
CD, another drug trafficker who owed Bacon a lot of money at the time, agreed to be the shooter, “because that is the way he could work off his debt. … In the drug business, if you owe someone a lot of money, you have to either pay it back or work it off somehow,” AB said.
AB said Bacon told him to lure Karbovanec out on Dec. 31 by explaining that their crew had to rob another drug dealer.
At first, Karbovanec refused to participate in the robbery and AB had to get a note from Bacon to deliver to Karbovanec, AB testified.
The note, delivered earlier Dec. 31, told Karbovaenc “to grow a set of balls and come out and do this job with me and for him not to have a gun on him. And that if he doesn’t want to, he’s done with us,” AB told jurors.
After reading Bacon’s message, Karbovanec agreed to meet AB, CD and two others that night.
AB said that he and CD and their driver fled after the unsuccessful hit, driving in a stolen Ford Bronco to another dead-end street where they abandoned the vehicle and attempted to light it on fire.
They then fled down a path through a wooded area that they called the Love Forest where AB told CD to throw away the Glock .45 he had used in the shooting.
He said he heard the gun make a splash, so assumed it had landed in a creek.
AB said he was very upset with CD because of the failed hit.
CD also “knew he just f—ed up a big job … because he just failed to kill Dennis. He failed to kill one of our friends that is in our crew,” AB testified.
The trial continues.