News We can Live Without
Today the trial of Robert Pickton, the alleged serial killer of over 60 women in the Vancouver area, begins. If you know nothing of this case you are lucky but you are about to have all the details thrust upon you. Canada's largest murder trial to start - Yahoo! News
In brief, Robert Pickton was a pig farmer in suburban Vancouver who picked up women, most of whom were sex trade workers in downtown Vancouver to party with and then murder.
Until now the grizzly details of his crimes have been limited by the court so as not to taint the potential jury pool. Now the jury has been selected these restraints have been lifted.
The trial will last for a year during which time we will daily be subjected to reminders of the dreadful details. Pickton is being tried on six of the murders. He has been charged with 20 more which he will be tried for later. He is suspected of killing at least 30 more women.
It appears the bodies of his victims were disposed of by feeding them to his pigs, grinding their flesh up with pork and sold or given away to his friends and neighbours for consumption, sent to a rendering plant along with waste pig parts, where it became part of products for human use from animal feed to cosmetic products and some were left to decompose on his farm property. The evidence is so horrendous that some reporters who know the evidence have sought psychological couselling. The jury has been warned by the judge of the disturbing nature of the evidence which they will have to view in a year long trial. Death Farm News The Stranger, Seattle's Only Newspaper
Most of the evidence wil be forensic evidence recovered over two years of work of digging up all the soil on the 17 acre Pickton farm and sifting it for pieces upon which DNA could be extracted to identify the women. It took 100 professional people to do this painstaking investigation.
The media circus is about to begin. The CBC this morning is beginning special braodcasts to follow this trial. They claim to have methods in place to self impose limits to the graphic nature of evidence reported upon. As we know, this will not be enough to limit the details of the evidence coming out through less responsible sources.
This case will fill the press in the US as well. These reportings are beyond any control the courts may put on distribution of evidence as we learned from the notorious Bernardo/Homolka trial, over a decade ago.
A plea of guilty would save us all from having to witness this trial for the next year. This would be too much to hope for. There will also be other trials in the future so it may drag on for years,
At the heart of this case are the lives of the women. As sex trade workers, drug addicts, native or troubled women their deaths went under reported and badly investigated for years. Who in mainstream society cares about marginalized women in the downtown core of Vancouver??? There are efforts to have the stories of these women be told with dignity and caring. These women were loved by their families and friends.
Hopefully, this trial will resolve issues for those who loved them and bring a kind of justice and dignity to their lives. Only if this is achieved will the trial have much meaning for society for the details are too ghastly to be told.