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Complainant "nothing like we've seen" on camera, assault trial hears

The defense in the sexual assault trial of North Bay bus driver Michael Linkie began presenting its side this morning.
The defense in the sexual assault trial of North Bay bus driver Michael Linkie began presenting its side this morning.

Linkie was called to the stand and was only asked one question by defense lawyer Andrew Perrin: if the allegations made by the complainant, who’s name cannot be published due to a court ordered ban, had ever happened.

“Not ever,” Linkie stated.

The defense’s case only included four witnesses, all of whom testified day.

The four witnesses included Linkie, transit dispatcher Suzanne Kornaki and her husband Walter, a bus driver and president of CUPE local 122, which represents city bus drivers.

Laurence Dawson, another driver was also called.

Kornaki told the court that he had previously worked as a mechanic for North Bay Transit. He said that he has “a working knowledge of the buses.”

Perrin asked Kornaki about the lighting system inside the bus, and when and how these lights are able to be turned off.

“If the doors are open you can not shut off the lights at the back,” Kornaki said.

The complainant previously testified that on one of the alleged occasions, Linkie had “shut off the radio and the lights,” and urinated out the open back door before allegedly assaulting her.

Bus driver Laurence Dawson testified about his encounters with the complainant while “at work.”

“She’s nothing like we’ve seen on camera,” Dawson said.

Dawson explained that he had seen taped statements made by the complainant during the preliminary hearing where she was quiet and emotional.

“I know her to be extremely aggressive,” Dawson said.

Dawson explained that he has seen the complainant “hide behind signs to watch buses come into the terminal,” and has almost been pushed over by her.

During the trial, the court has heard of previous scandals involving the North Bay transit system, and the complainant.

She and an ex-boyfriend had tried to scam the transit system by saying that he had fallen off of a bus. By fabricating the accident, the ex-boyfriend hoped to get a settlement from the transit system.

“He did it on his own,” the complainant said.

The ex-boyfriend filed his grievance to transit dispatcher, Suzanne Kormaki, by using the complainant’s phone. The call was made in the presence of the complainant, and her voice was heard in the background by Mrs. Kormaki.

“I’m sure it was (the complainant),” Mrs. Kormaki said.

Mrs. Kormaki explained that when she received the complaint about falling off the bus, the caller identified himself as the “fiancé” of the complainant. Walter Kormaki, husband of Suzanne Kormaki, was driving the bus that the fiancé said he fell off of. However, the fiancé said that it was Nicole Dawson who was driving at the time.

The incident report created by Walter Kormaki for the fake accident, was sent through his wife’s email, which raised concern from Crown attorney Frances Howe.

Howe alluded to the idea that perhaps both incident reports were written by Mrs. Kormaki.

“I don’t write that good,” Mrs. Kormaki said.

Also both reports made by Nicole Dawson and Mr. Kormaki concluded with the lone sentence “the end,” which raised further concern from Howe.

“It’s unusual to end a report with 'the end,'” Howe said.

Mrs. Kormaki was sent to her office, with a police escort, to retrieve her version of the incident report, which she had saved in her email. Mrs. Kormaki’s report was not included in files provided to police by transit officials, which were made evidence by the crown.

Linkie will be cross-examined Monday when the trial resumes.