Gilbert Robinson was 'angry' with estranged wife over divorce, son testifies at Edmonton murder trial

The jury tasked with determining if Gilbert Robinson is guilty of murdering his estranged wife was told by the couple’s son, Paul Robinson, on Friday that his father told him his mother had injured herself falling down the stairs.

Gina Robinson died from blunt-force trauma two days after the father telephoned his son the night of April 21, 2014 to tell him about the fall.

Gilbert Robinson is charged with second-degree murder in Gina Robinson’s death. He allegedly beat her in his Castle Downs home.

An evidence photo from Gina Robinson’s murder trial shows where her injured body was found at the bottom of the stairs. (Court exhibit)

His father was angry over spousal payments he had been ordered to pay to the victim, said Paul Robinson. He testified that his father would “vent” about their divorce, at one point saying that “if [Gina] was dead, I wouldn’t have to worry about this bullshit.”

According to Paul Robinson, his father’s wages had been garnished because he had failed to make spousal support payments. The court had ordered him to pay $2,800 a month.

During cross-examination, defence lawyer Peter Royal asked Paul Robinson about his mother’s medical history. The son said his mother had suffered from vertigo in the past, and that it was possible she had lost her balance and fallen down the stairs.

Paul Robinson also testified that his father had never been violent towards his wife and children.

The court also heard testimony from first responders to the scene, the victim’s boyfriend, plus a friend of Gilbert Robinson and a tenant of his. Eleven witnesses were called by the Crown on Friday.

‘A lot of trauma’

Several first responders were called by the Crown to testify about what they saw when they first assessed the victim’s condition.

Courtney Murphy, an emergency medical technician with 10 years experience, worked to stabilize Gina Robinson’s condition when she arrived at the scene.

“There was a lot of facial trauma, a lot of blood,” said Murphy.

Murphy said she has responded to over 50 calls for falls down staircases during her career. “I’ve never seen this much trauma,” she added.

Murphy testified that the accused avoided eye contact at first, and seemed “nonchalant compared to [Gina’s] friends, who were worried for her.”

The jury heard that Murphy repeatedly asked Gilbert Robinson what had happened, to which he responded “I don’t know.”

Firefighter Kenneth Bowman, now retired, testified that the victim’s eyes were swollen shut. He also described seeing “a lot of trauma.”

Victim’s boyfriend testifies

The Crown also called on Deen Weeks, who was dating Gina Robinson at the time of her death.

Gina Robinson

Gina Robinson, 54, died in April 2014 of blunt force trauma. She died in hospital two days after her estranged husband allegedly beat her. (Supplied )

Weeks told the court of an incident that occured in October 2012, after he had taken Gina Robinson to a wedding. Her estranged husband was waiting for them at the condo where she lived.

According to Weeks, Gilbert Robinson demanded to know who was with Gina and “verbally assaulted” his estranged wife before leaving.

A friend of Gilbert Robinson’s, Gordon¬†Saffin, also testified for the Crown. He said the accused was frustrated about the state of his finances and had mentioned “that things would be different if [Gina] was gone.”

Gilbert Robinson’s former tenant, Spencer Henderson, was also called as a witness. At the time of the victim’s death, Henderson was a roommate of Paul Robinson, in a house owned by the accused.

Henderson told court that Gilbert Robinson complained about having to sell the rental property because of the divorce, and said that he wished Gina Robinson “was gone.”

The trial is expected to continue for another two weeks.

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