The death of the cheerful little girl named Victoria (Tori) Stafford appears to have had virtually no impact upon Michael Rafferty and to have been an utterly unremarkable event in his frenetic sexual calendar.
Certainly, as Rafferty was before Tori's kidnapping and death - carousing like a rabbit, living off the avails of one young woman and using her money to buy presents for others, juggling more than a dozen women like balls in the air, constantly working his BlackBerry to make the next connection that might satisfy what was clearly an omnivorous appetite - so was he after it.
Now 31, Rafferty is pleading not guilty to kidnapping, sexual assault causing bodily harm and first-degree murder in Tori's April 8, 2009, death.
But through his lawyer, Dirk Derstine, Rafferty has admitted being in his car when Terri-Lynne McClintic arrived with the little girl (Derstine said Rafferty "thought nothing of it") and to helping McClintic, then one of his girlfriends, "clean up."
In his cross-examination of Mc-Clintic here last month, Derstine maintained that Rafferty turned down McClintic's crass offer to have the child sexually, was sent away from the car for a time and was "horrified" when he returned to find Tori dead on the ground.
But as he bombarded some of his latest online conquests in the hours before Tori was led away by McClintic as she headed home from school in nearby Woodstock, Ont. - he even made one call in mid-kidnapping, this to a potential date at 4: 28 p.m. that day, perhaps when he was buying painkillers from his drug dealer in Guelph - so did he work the Black-Berry in the immediate aftermath of the little girl's death.
McClintic's account of Tori's slaying - for three years she said Rafferty killed her, but this year changed her story to claim she had bludgeoned her herself - is imprecise as to times.
But she testified when the trio arrived at the country lane just south of Mount Forest, Ont., it was still light out, perhaps, she guessed, about 5: 30 p.m.
By the time she and Rafferty left the area, Tori's body by then hidden under a farmer's rock pile, she said it was dark.
Within a few hours, Rafferty's cellphone records show, he was frantically texting one young woman about a rendezvous the very next day.
That woman, 23-year-old Elysia Haid, told Ontario Superior Court Judge Thomas Heeney and the jury on Friday that she arrived at the Woodstock home Rafferty shared with his mother about 10 a.m. on April 9.
After what passed for what is apparently the modern version of a courtship - a bit of a drive, a fast food lunch - they were back at his house.
As Haid put it, in that matter-of-fact manner to which the court has become accustomed, "We watched some TV, we had sex and then I left."
She was out of his house between 3 and 4 p.m., she estimated, well less than 24 hours after Tori's battered remains, encased in garbage bags, were dumped under the rocks.
Rafferty had met Haid, she said, just once, days earlier after they had first made contact on the now infamous Plenty of Fish dating website.
It was one of a series of revelations as, with the prosecution case winding to a close, the last of a parade of young women took the witness stand.
The shocker was that Rafferty essentially pimped out one girlfriend and proceeded to drain her of more than $16,000 in the following six months.
This came from Charity Spitzig, now just 26 and a mother of five (one child passed away). She connected with Rafferty on Plenty of Fish in April 2008, she said, met him right away and began what she considered to be a "pretty promising" relationship that was "exclusive, you could say."
She lived in London, Ont., he in Woodstock. Rafferty told her he was in school, taking dance courses and working in the home-renovation business - this was but one version of what he regularly told the women he met -
She told prosecutor Kevin Gowdey that, as a serious relationship, she was prepared to "invest" in it, and when asked if she loaned money to Rafferty, replied, "We discussed ways for finances to be made easier, me getting into the escort business, which I did, and any monies from there went directly to him."
Bank records show that, in the six months from December 2008 to May 2009, Spitzig transferred $16,835 to Rafferty. This, at last, went some distance to explain how Rafferty was able to spread his minimal largesse - he bought a couple of girlfriends some clothes, but most were lucky to have coffee or a drive before sex - around. The only concrete evidence of him ever having a job came from the owner of a landscape company, where he worked for about a year ending in the fall of 2006, and testimony from a couple of witnesses who said that he worked for a time at a slaughterhouse.
Yet he appeared to have money enough for drugs, gas for his 2003 Honda Civic, a whopping Black-Berry bill, coffee dates galore and the various shoes that littered the back of his car.
Now, the jurors know where he got the money: He was living off the avails of prostitution.
(Heeney cautioned the jurors that though they may find Rafferty's behaviour, "particularly after April 8 has some relevance," whether he "was a philandering cad or worse," they can't conclude that as a bad character he is more likely to be guilty.)
In fact, court heard Friday, on the kidnapping/murder day that appears to have left so small an imprint on Rafferty, he asked Spitzig twice for money.
That morning, she transferred $400 to his account, for a car payment, she thought, but it appears to be these funds he used later that day to buy drugs at his dealer's.
By 7: 52 on April 8, 2009, Tori barely cold in her grave, Rafferty was texting Patrycja Demides for the first of 10 times that night (they were arguing, she testified, and in midbreakup); by 10: 29 p.m., Rafferty was texting Haid to firm up their rendezvous the next day; at 11: 31 p.m., he was texting Celina Horvath. (She declined to meet him in person, wise, it turns out, beyond her then 18 years.)
Horrified, Derstine proclaimed his client was, to see that child dead. Really?
All the evidence suggests that April 8, 2009, was just another ordinary Michael Rafferty day.