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First witness takes the stand at Kitchener murder trial

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Melinda Vasilije’s former roommate described the 22-year-old as a kind person and loyal friend, as the trial of the man accused of killing her continued Thursday morning.

Vasilije was found dead in her Kitchener apartment on April 28, 2017. Her ex-boyfriend, Ager Hasan is charged with second-degree murder in her death.

On Thursday, the jury heard that both the Crown and the defence agree Hasan caused Vasilije’s death, but Hasan has pleaded not guilty to the charge of second-degree murder.

Anna Manda, Vasilije’s roommate at the Country Hill Drive apartment, was called as the first witness.

Manda met Vasilije in Grade 8, and they remained friends into their twenties, moving in together on April 1, 2017, just weeks before Vasilije’s death.

"Melinda was really sweet. She was always the one person who would be there for you, even if you called her at two in the morning," Manda told court Thursday morning.

THE BREAK UP

Manda testified Vasilije didn’t tell Hasan she planned to move in with Manda until about a week before because she knew he wouldn’t be happy she wasn’t moving in with a friend instead of him.

“She didn’t want to live with him,” Manda told the jury.

By April 3, Vasilije broke up with Hasan.

“The relationship was just too much for her. It was toxic,” Manda said.

FIGHT RESULTS IN 911 CALL

But Hasan was unwilling to accept the break up, coming to the apartment uninvited that night, Manda testified.

The situation escalated into a fight involving Manda’s boyfriend and brother, who were also there, and ultimately led to 911 calls.

Manda said in the following weeks, Vasilije was inundated with messages from Hasan and she would sometimes cry when telling her roommate about them.

“She felt pretty upset because of how much he was messaging her. She was overwhelmed,” Manda described.

FATAL STABBING

On April 26, Vasilije asked her roommate if she should meet up with Hasan again, texting: “Should I just go and get it over with quickly?”

“Don’t you dare go by yourself,” Manda texted back.

Hasan ended up coming over the following day. Manda said she asked other people to also come over to their apartment because she was scared.

Hasan arrived late that evening to talk with Vasilije. Manda said she was going in and out of the apartment during his visit and getting increasingly frustrated with how long Hasan was staying.

Then in the early morning hours of April 28, Manda arrived home from a fast food run. She testified she found Vasilije on the floor in a pool of her own blood and a knife in the kitchen.

Manda’s husband, who was her boyfriend at the time, also took the stand Thursday and described the fight at the beginning of April.

The defence cross-examined both witnesses, asking questions about the particulars of their testimony and memory.

The next witness will be called Friday.

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