Steve Pirko (left) is charged with the 2014 murder of Chris Ausman (right) of Cranbrook. (File photo)

An Okanagan man lied to RCMP for three years about his part in a 2014 killing

Steven Randy Pirko is charged with the second degree-murder of Christopher Ausman

Steven Randy Pirko denied his involvement in the alleged January 2014 murder of Christoper Ausman to police during the close to three-year investigation.

Ausman’s body was found on the sidewalk along Highway 33 and Pirko wasn’t charged with second-degree murder until November 2016.

READ MORE: Kelowna court hears, 2014 murder victim had a history of violence

On Tuesday, the judge and jury heard Pirko confess to lying to RCMP about leaving his house the night of the incident.

“I don’t know why I’m even a suspect, I didn’t even go out that night,” Pirko said in an evidential transcript read in court.

Pirko said Tuesday in court that he initially said those things to police to buy time because he was scared and wanted to get more information about the investigation.

“I was scared, there were so many thoughts going on in my head. I didn’t want to get in trouble. I didn’t want to go to jail, I didn’t want to leave my mom,” Pirko said.

Defence lawyer Jordan Watt asked Pirko what he was doing from February 2014 to November 2016 — the time between the alleged killing and the time Pirko was arrested.

READ MORE: Kelowna man charged with murder was prime suspect for three years

Pirko said he didn’t work and his addiction continued to get worse.

“I lived in drug shacks and did crystal meth, speed and heroin. I was doing two to three points a day.”

Watt asked why he kept asking for a blanket and water during the initial interview after being arrested.

According to Pirko, he was far into his addiction when RCMP arrested him and conducting interviews, he was in, what he described, extreme withdrawal.

“Your legs are restless, you get body aches and hot and cold flashes,” Pirko said. “I was really uncomfortable and just needed to lay down.”

READ MORE: Witness says Kelowna man on trial for murder admitted to the killing

Watt asked if he was currently experiencing withdrawal.

Pirko said no, he is now on the methadone program.

“Methadone helps keeps the cravings away. It also helps block the brain receptors, so if you tried doing it you wouldn’t get the same effects.”

It is the sixth week of trial. Pirko will return to the B.C. Supreme Court on Wednesday.


@LarynGilmour
laryn.gilmour@blackpress.ca

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