A court was shown video Tuesday of an interview in which Greg Fertuck admitted to RCMP that she was at the gravel pit where his wife, Sheree, went missing – on the same day that she vanished.
Greg Fertuck is now on trial at Court of Queen’s Bench in Saskatoon for Sheree’s death. She was last seen on December 7, 2015. Her body has never been found, but her semi-truck was found left in a gravel pit near Kenaston, Saskatoon on December 8, 2015.
Greg Fertuck is now on trial for first-degree murder linked with her death. He has pleaded not guilty.
The video of Greg Fertuck’s interview with RCMP at the Saskatoon detachment, which was shown in court Tuesday, shows RCMP officers called Fertuck’s daughter Lanna into the interview after his admission that he was at the gravel pit.
They explain to her and Greg, as she sits across from her dad, why she was invited.
“Lanna needs to hear some of the key things, to see why Greg is here,” Staff Sgt. Charles Lerat says in the video.
“[Sheree] is a victim of foul play, for what your dad did.”
Greg interjects at this point, the video shows, saying,
“Lanna, I didn’t do anything to your mother.”
Lerat and Sergeant Chad Clark then offer Lanna a summary of their investigation, pointing on how a blood spot found in Greg’s truck was a match with Sheree’s DNA and how a “ping” from a cellphone tower placed Greg at the gravel pit that day.
Greg had declined that he was at the gravel pit for the first few hours of the interview, which was done on October 25, 2017. Then he shifts his story, stating that he had initially declined it because “everyone thought I had done something to Sheree.”
In the video, Greg says that he had gone to the pit to pick up five pails of gravel for some work on his fence and to hopefully bump into Sheree and discuss future work. But he said he never did see her at the pit.
The two officers insinuate that this admission casts doubt into the whole timeline that Greg had constructed to account for his movements on December 7, 2015.
Lanna becomes emotional at that point in the video, as her dad continues to protest his innocence.
“Dad, just tell the truth,” she says through tears. “She’s gone and not coming back.”
“I don’t know where she is,” Greg replies. “Lanna, I never did nothing to your mother.”
Greg Fertuck’s trial is now in its third week. The Crown has thus far called over 30 witnesses.
The prosecution’s theory is that Greg shot his ex-wife twice during a confrontation at the gravel pit and then moved her body to another place in Canada.
The theory is based on disclosures Greg made to undercover police officers posing as criminals in an elaborate operation known as a “Mr. Big sting” back in 2019.
The admissibility of these statements has yet to be determined by Justice Richard Danyliuk.
The footage shown Tuesday was part of a voir dire – a mini-trial within the underway proceedings – to determine the admissibility of the statements.
Staff Sergeant Charles Lerat did the original interview after Greg Fertuck’s arrest in 2017, repeatedly challenging him to account for how the cellphone tower placed his phone near the Kenaston gravel pit at 1:20 P.M CST.
After adamantly declining that he had gone anywhere near the gravel pit at the beginning of the interview, he suddenly admitted to Lerat that he had gone to the pit, but claimed he never saw Sheree.
“I would never harm the mother of my children. I don’t care what you guys say.”
Sergeant Chad Clark and Lerat both scoffed at Greg’s explanation for why he drove to the pit, a 230km round trip for 5 pails of gravel, and why he never admitted it to officers.
“You’re not making much sense. Try again,” Clark said.
“Why drive 130 miles for five pails of gravel?” Lerat added.
When Greg said that he had as well wanted to speak with Sheree regarding work but that she was not there, Clark asked why he had not called her later that day to check. Greg said he did not think Sheree would pick up because she was carrying gravel.
“What are we going to tell these kids?” Clark said. “That your dad has given some pretty crappy excuses?”
‘They believe their dad did it’
The officers then played Greg videotaped messages from his two daughters, Lanna and Lauren, who had only learned hours earlier that he was arrested for allegedly killing their mom.
“You’re still going to be my dad,” Lanna is heard saying on the tape. “We all need some closure. It’s gone on long enough.”
“I’ll always love you,” said Lauren. “Just tell the truth, dad.”
Clark then asked how the video messages make Greg feel.
“It sort of breaks my heart,” he said.
“It should break your heart,” Clark replied. “They believe their dad did it.”
It was after showing Greg the video messages, and his continued protest that he’s not guilty, that the police physically brought Lanna into the interview.
While RCMP arrested Greg on October 25, 2017, and interrogated him for 6 hours, he never admitted to murdering his wife and was not charged.
Two years on, after the undercover sting, Greg was again charged in Sheree’s death.
In the 2017 interview, Lerat told Greg they could charge him without finding her body.
“There’s no doubt in my mind you killed Sheree,” he said. “It’s a fable, a myth, that with no body there is no crime.”
Fertuck’s trial, which is being heard by a judge alone, is planned for eight weeks.