Joshua Boyle leaves court with his mother Linda Boyle in Ottawa on Wednesday, March 27, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Joshua Boyle leaves court with his mother Linda Boyle in Ottawa on Wednesday, March 27, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Ex-hostage Boyle’s testimony at assault trial was evasive, self-serving: Crown

Boyle has pleaded not guilty to several offences including assault, sexual assault and unlawful confinement

Former Afghanistan hostage Joshua Boyle has woven a fictional, self-serving narrative to disguise the fact he demeaned, subjugated and assaulted his wife Caitlan Coleman, a Crown attorney charged Tuesday at Boyle’s criminal trial.

“He effectively coercively controlled her, and this developed over a number of years,” prosecutor Jason Neubauer said as he began the Crown’s concluding arguments.

Boyle, 36, has pleaded not guilty to several offences against Coleman including assault, sexual assault and unlawful confinement in the period of October to December 2017.

The incidents are alleged to have taken place after he and Coleman returned to Canada following five years as hostages in the hands of Taliban-linked extremists. The couple settled into an Ottawa apartment in late 2017 with the three children Coleman had in captivity.

Boyle has disputed allegations he mistreated Coleman verbally or physically, portraying her as unstable and prone to fits that made family life extremely difficult.

During the trial, Boyle has described himself as a masochist who sleeps on the floor, partakes in bondage-style sex and has little regard for his personal safety.

Boyle’s lawyers have acknowledged he is unorthodox, unconventional and even unlikable, but stress that he scrupulously adheres to the truth.

ALSO READ: Wife of former hostage Joshua Boyle testifies to abuse

Neubauer assailed the reasoning as “a straw man,” saying the Crown is not arguing that someone who deviates from social norms is less credible than the next person.

Rather, Boyle’s testimony is generally unbelievable and incapable of raising reasonable doubt about the criminal charges he faces, Neubauer said. “Aspects of it are incompatible with common sense.”

The prosecutor variously described Boyle’s statements in the witness box as illogical, evasive, fabricated, argumentative and “outright lies.”

Neubauer cited a complimentary, loving text message Boyle apparently sent Coleman, one quickly followed by a second message saying: Oops, wrong address — April Fool’s, expect painful biting tonight.

He accused Boyle of contradicting himself by first acknowledging he sent the text, then saying he didn’t know if it was his message.

“It matters because it affects Mr. Boyle’s overall credibility,” Neubauer said. “And that of course reflects poorly on his honesty as a witness.”

Boyle’s lawyers have urged Judge Peter Doody to reject Coleman’s claims of abuse, characterizing her testimony as the fuzzy recollections of an unreliable woman with serious anger-management issues.

Lawyer Lawrence Greenspon asserted Tuesday that Coleman fled the apartment she shared with Boyle and accused him of assault as part of a long-desired plan to win sole custody of their children and make a new life in the United States.

Greenspon said Coleman saw the night of Dec. 30, 2017, as her best chance to put the plan into effect.

Coleman grabbed money and family passports before heading to a downtown hotel to see her visiting mother, who was about to head back to the U.S.

Boyle, meanwhile, called police to say his wife was missing and expressed concern for her safety.

An officer turned up at the hotel and listened to Coleman’s claims her husband had assaulted her several times, leading to Boyle’s arrest a short time later.

Neubauer is slated to continue with the Crown’s closing submissions Wednesday.

Jim Bronskill , The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, announced the province surpasses one million COVID-19 tests Friday. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
COVID-19: Central zone active cases up by 100 in last 24 hours

Most central Alberta communities under province’s enhanced measures list

Sylvan Lake RCMP, Fire Department and Victim Services will be out on Dec. 5 for the annual Charity Check-stop. File Photo
Give Sylvan Lake RCMP the bird at Charity Check-stop

Sylvan Lake RCMP will be accepting frozen turkeys for the food bank during the charity check-stop

Ecole H.J. Cody School. File Photo
Sylvan Lake high school temporarily moves to online classes

Over the weekend, H.J. Cody reported six positive cases of COVID-19

.
Alberta confirmed more than 1,500 COVID-19 cases Sunday

Central zone active cases slightly up

Kyle Charles poses for a photo in Edmonton on Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. Marvel Entertainment, the biggest comic book publisher in the world, hired the 34-year-old First Nations illustrator as one of the artists involved in Marvel Voice: Indigenous Voices #1 in August. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
VIDEO: Indigenous illustrator of new Marvel comic hopes Aboriginal women feel inspired

Kyle Charles says Indigenous women around the world have reached out

Russ and Luanne Carl are sharing about their experiences of fighting COVID-19 this past summer.
photo submitted
Stettler couple opens up about COVID-19 battle

Luanne and Russ Carl urge others to bolster personal safety measures amidst ongoing pandemic

This 2019 photo provided by The ALS Association shows Pat Quinn. Quinn, a co-founder of the viral ice bucket challenge, died Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020, at the age of 37. (Scott Kauffman/The ALS Association via AP)
Co-founder of viral ALS Ice Bucket Challenge dies at 37

Pat Quinn was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, in 2013

Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada David Lametti speaks with the media following party caucus in Ottawa, Tuesday, January 28, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Exclusion of mental health as grounds for assisted death is likely temporary: Lametti

Senators also suggested the exclusion renders the bill unconstitutional

Claudio Mastronardi, Toronto branch manager at Carmichael Engineering, is photographed at the company’s offices in Mississauga, Ont., Thursday, Nov. 19, 2020. As indoor air quality becomes a major concern in places of business, HVAC companies are struggling to keep up with demand for high quality filtration systems. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
Business is booming for HVAC companies as commercial buildings see pandemic upgrades

‘The demand right now is very high. People are putting their health and safety ahead of cost’

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speak to the media about the COVID-19 virus outside Rideau Cottage in Ottawa, Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Long-awaited federal rent subsidy program for businesses hurt by COVID-19 opens today

The new program will cover up to 65 per cent of rent or commercial mortgage interest

Traffic crosses over the Lions Gate Bridge from North Vancouver into Vancouver on July 2, 2015. Motorists would have to pay a fee to drive into downtown Vancouver under the city's plan to slow climate change but one expert warns it could pose financial hardship for some. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver’s climate plan ‘first 10 steps in a journey of 10,000,’ says expert

Almost 40 per cent of Vancouver’s carbon pollution comes from vehicles

Alberta has 1,910 active cases of COVID-19 as of Wednesday. Red Deer is reporting five active cases, with 108 recovered. (File photo)
After COVID-related transplant delays, 16-year-old N.S. girl gets lung transplant

‘This is the difficult time now of seeing Tahlia in ICU hooked up to 15 IVs and sedated’

Most Read