Cortney Lake’s ex-boyfriend sentenced for breaching court orders

Given time served, Philip Smith has 24 days left of his 3-month jail term

Published on August 9, 2017

Philip Steven Smith is led into provincial court in St. John's in this file photo.

©Rosie Mullaley/The Telegram file photo

More details have emerged about the last day Cortney Lake was known to be alive, as her ex-boyfriend was sentenced on a number of charges in provincial court in St. John's Wednesday morning.

Appearing via video from the penitentiary, Philip Steven Smith, 25, pleaded guilty to breaching a number of court orders, including one that banned him from having any contact with Lake.

Lake, a 24-year-old mother of one, was last seen the evening of June 7 and police believe she was murdered.

Earlier that day, Smith was in court, where he pleaded guilty to a range of charges, including some involving Lake.

According to an agreed statement of facts signed by Smith and presented in court Wednesday morning, Smith called Lake twice on the phone the night he appeared in court. A witness who was with Lake when she took the calls heard Smith ask Lake to go to his house to pick up her Christmas decorations, and she agreed.

Shortly before 8 that evening, Smith picked Lake up in his truck as she was walking along Michener Avenue. That moment, caught on dash cam video by another driver, is the last time Lake was seen.

Smith was arrested for breaching the no contact order and released on June 12, with more conditions, including that he stay away from alcohol and any place serving it. Two weeks later, police officers saw him sitting on the patio of Jack Astor's restaurant in downtown St. John's, drinking beer with a woman. Police followed them to an Irving location on Torbay Road, where Smith bought a dozen beer. That's when he was arrested.

Smith was sentenced Wednesday to three months in jail. Given credit for the time Smith has been in custody, he has 24 days left to serve.

Police have not made any public connection between Smith and Lake's disappearance, though they executed a warrant to search his Alice Drive home since he's been in custody, removing a truck and other items. Police have also appealed to the public for any information about a truck they believe carried Lake to a secluded area where she may have been murdered, with a description matching that of Smith's pickup.

Police are still asking the public to come forward with any information regarding Lake's disappearance or murder, by calling them at 729-8000 or Crime Stoppers Anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS.


Twitter: @tara_bradbury