KAMLOOPS — Nearly two years after Cody Foster was killed in a Dallas RV park, the accused in the case is telling his side of the story.
Stephen Fraser, now 58 years old, took the stand in Kamloops Supreme Court Wednesday (Dec. 5), where's he's been standing trial for a second-degree murder charge in connection to Foster's February 2017 death.
Fraser described his relationship with the 26-year-old Foster as a slow start that eventually turned into a months-long friendship. Foster had been working at Adwood Manufacturing at the time of his death, but Fraser hadn't worked there in months.
During his testimony, Fraser said he didn't enjoy working at Adwood — partly because some of the "younger guys" at the business were "not very well-educated" and some participated in criminal activities.
About six months into Foster's employment there, Fraser said the two eventually became friendly. They went fishing together a couple of times and every so often smoked marijuana together.
He claims Foster told him he used to sell drugs when he lived in Fort Nelson, and was an "enforcer" when he lived in Fort St. John — allegedly going after people for drug debts.
Fraser testified he saw Foster use cocaine once, but believed Foster and his roommate were into crack. He also never saw Foster deal drugs, but claimed Foster talked about it.
The afternoon of Feb. 11, 2017, Fraser said he had been at his father's North Shore home, working on renovating a pet carrier for his pet rats, whom he referred to as his "girls" during testimony.
While he was there, he said Foster showed up and opened the door, telling Fraser he was broke and had to pay his hydro bill but didn't have gas money to get to the Dallas RV park.
Fraser borrowed money from his father and agreed to take Foster where he needed to go. They stopped at the gas station and headed straight to Foster's lot, where he paid his landlord.
While he was doing that, Fraser went into Foster's trailer and fixed himself a vodka and Diet Coke. When Foster returned, he joined Fraser in drinking a beer and the two shared a joint.
Fraser had brought "his girls" with him in the pet carrier, but Foster said he didn't want the rats to run loose, which Fraser said is what usually occurred. He brought the rats into a hollow bench and the cover stayed lifted up.
Fraser got up for another drink, and claims Foster then asked him to crack his back for him. It caught Fraser off guard, but he did it, and then Foster began talking to him.
"He was standing towards the bed... He said, 'Just so you know, I really don't want to kill you...' Then he said, 'but I've got no choice'," Fraser testified. "He said, 'Don't feel bad my brother from another mother, it's not personal; it's just business.' I was very shocked, I guess."
At this point Foster was hugging Fraser, while Fraser looked around to find something to "distract or hit" him with.
"The last thing he said was that he was with the Independent Soldiers and he was just a guy who had to follow orders," Fraser said. "Basically, at that moment I was his prisoner."
Fraser spotted a knife in Foster's dish rack, and "pushed the knife" into Foster's neck, but Fraser said that didn't seem to affect him at all. A struggle ensued, and Fraser claimed Foster grabbed his body and pushed him straight back before the two rolled around struggling for the upper hand.
Fraser said he ended up getting on top of Foster and stabbing him again which caused the handle on the knife to break apart. He said Foster still kept his grip on Fraser.
"I hit him I think about four times. As hard as I could, right in his face," Fraser said. But that still didn't have any real impact on Foster, Fraser claims.
Fraser was still trying to escape, and said he looked back at Foster who looked "like he was laughing" with blood coming out of his mouth.
"It was like looking at the devil up close," Fraser said. "I thought if I could hit him a few more times then maybe he'd let go."
Fraser said he hit Foster at least six more times, but the hitting still had no effect. Then he tried hitting Foster directly in his stab wound and on his arms. Fraser says he started feeling dizzy and felt like he was going to black out.
Fraser testified that he then realized he had his fishing knife on him — which he usually never did. He grabbed the knife, but the next thing he remembered was having a dream about swinging his left arm while he held the knife. Then he "woke up".
Foster was still holding onto Fraser with his eyes and mouth still open, Fraser said, and Fraser came loose and ran for the door.
He started yelling for help and ran outside where two nearby neighbours eventually came out to help and call the police.
Defence lawyers are expected to continue questioning Fraser this afternoon, and Crown prosecutors will have the opportunity to cross-examine him.
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