Looking back in my earliest diary, from 1947, when I was barely a teen ager, I had this fascination with crime involving murder cases. I recall when we first moved to the Coast when I was twelve, I was horrified to read about hangings that took place in a prison not far away. I made notation in my diary about a certain case where two young men had been hung for killing a policeman. "I feel very sad," I wrote. I remember the pall that used to fall over the city whenever an execution was to take place. Now we don't have capital punishment, and I don't agree with it because who knows how many innocent people were punished before we had DNA testing? But there are certain individuals that the tax-payers are paying to support who I wonder about...such as the notorious Clifford Olson who killed children and sits in prison mocking his victim's families. Why did he deserve to live?
WHO IS THIS GUY? Robert "Willie" Pickton (57)
He calls himself "The Pig Man". He bragged about how one day he killed 35 pigs and how good he was at the job.
He is now accused of killing 26 women who's remains have been found on his pig farm.
SOME BACKGROUND ABOUT THE CASE
By the Fall of 2001 there were 45 women officially listed as missing from the Downtown East Side of Vancouver. The investigation was hampered by police infighting, inexperience, under-resourcing and mistakes. By Feb. 2002, after a lot of public pressure and a shake-up in the police dept. the police raided the farm and laid the first of 26 charges.
Now, five years later and an extensive investigation that has/will cost millions, the day of reckoning has come. This crime trial has made news all over the world and 350 representatives of the world's press have descended on the city. Some of the details are so gruesome both TV and newspapers are posting warnings before revealing them so viewers/readers have a choice of watching/reading. Some of the media's websites are posting stories about how to deal with the disturbing elements of the story.
Due to the huge anticipated volume of people interested in attending the trial, the courthouse will have an overflow room. No bags or electronic devices are allowed in either courtroom (except for media who are allowed to record the testimonies). Everyone entering will pass through a metal detector and through two security screenings.
The second day of the trial (and today) the jury saw a videotape of Pickton being interrogated by police. He, of course, claims no knowledge of even knowing the missing women, in spite of evidence found right in the trailer where he lived!
WHO ARE THE FIRST SIX OF THE WOMEN HE IS CHARGED WITH MURDERING?
Sereena Abotsway (30)
Mona Wilson (26)
Andrea Joesbury (23)
Brenda Wolfe (30)
Marnie Frey (30?)
Each of them left behind caring families and friends. Why did they deserve to die?
As one of the grieving fathers said: "These are our sisters, our daughters, our mothers, all human beings -- all great people"
Note: There had been 60 women listed as missing, but several eventually surfaced. Pickton will be tried on the remaining 20 charges after the first trial is over which is expected to take up to a year.