Robert Pickton is a serial killer from Canada who was convicted of six murders but is believed to have murdered at least forty nine murders in which he fed the bodies to pigs. In this article on My Crime Library we are going to take a closer look at serial killer Robert Pickton “The Pig Farmer”
Robert Pickton Early Life
Robert Pickton was born on October 24 1949 to Leonard and Louis Pickton in Port Coquitlam British Columbia Canada on a pig farm. Robert who has an older sister Linda and a younger brother named David was raised by an abusive farmer. Both of Robert’s parents would die in 1978 leaving the pig farm to their children. However David and Linda wanted nothing to do with the farm so Robert took it over as his brother would take the Family home.
Pig Farm Parties
Robert Pickton would host parties at the Pickton pig farm where as many as two thousand people would attend including members of biker gangs and women who worked as sex workers in Vancouver. In 1997 Robert Pickton would be arrested for the attempted murder of a sex worker who was thankfully able to escape. Pickton would be released on a bond. The charges would later be dismissed due to lack of evidence.
That same year there were a number of legal issues against the pig farm due to its poor condition as it had been neglected by both Robert Pickton and his brother David. However the two brothers would continue to host their parties.
People began to notice that a variety of women who attended the parties would soon go missing. Even though this was reported to police the fact that they were sex workers made the women very low priority to the police.
Robert Pickton Pig Farm Search
Robert and his brother David were arrested after police searched the property and found a variety of weapons in 2002. Both of the brothers would be released however Robert was kept under surveillance by police.
Robert Pickton was arrested again and charged with the murders of two women who disappeared after attending a party at the Pickton farm.
The police began a deeper search into the Pickton farm and they would excavate the bodies of four more women. As the months passed over and the search into Robert Pickton and his farm continued police would find more and more bodies of women who were reported missing. By the time the search was through Robert would face twenty seven counts of murder.
Robert Pickton Trial
Robert was tried on twenty seven counts of murder on January 30, 2006 in which he plead not guilty. The judge presiding over the case would later break up the case into one where there was six counts of murder and the second for the remaining twenty counts. One of the cases was dropped due to lack of evidence. Eventually Robert would be convicted on the six counts of murder and would not face the other twenty counts. Robert was sentenced to twenty five years to life in prison, under Canadian law he must serve twenty five years before he becomes eligible for parole.
Robert Pickton More News
After DNA evidence linked serial killer Robert Pickton to the disappearance of her sister, Lori Ellis asked police for a prayer card belonging to her sister Lori Ellis
“It was the serenity prayer,” she said. “It was found on a shelf in [Pickton’s] slaughterhouse.”
The RCMP has applied to B.C. Supreme Court to dispose of evidence related to the Pickton case, news victims’ families say is traumatizing. The card owned by Cara Ellis is among the items
“I think it’s absolutely appalling they have done this without notifying the families,” Lori Ellis said of the disposal application. “We were told it would be in storage forever.”
Campbell River’s Rick Frey, whose daughter Marnie was among Pickton’s victims, said news of the bid to destroy the evidence just traumatizes everyone again.
He said Marnie’s daughter is afraid Pickton will be released and come after her. Pickton is in a Quebec prison, ineligible for parole until 2032.
RCMP spokeswoman Sgt. Janelle Shoihet confirmed that there is an application to dispose of exhibits related to the investigation.
Documents filed in court in New Westminster say the evidence includes videos of crime scenes, shoes, hypodermic needles, sex toys, rosary beads, knives, a gun, pieces of ammunition and licence plates, among other things.
The documents list most of the items as having no value, with ownership or lawful entitlement unknown. Two items have been returned to their owners, and the licence plates have been returned to ICBC. The videos of crime scenes are being kept by police.
What scant human remains investigators found on the property Pickton co-owned with his brother and sister were returned to the families a decade ago.
The application to dispose of the remaining evidence was filed by lawyer John Ahern, a prosecutor in the case.
In an affadavit, RCMP officer Shane Parsons says he does not anticipate further criminal proceedings related to the Pickton case. “Nor do I believe that the [exhibits] will be required as evidence in criminal proceedings against any other person.”
The Port Coquitlam pig farmer was convicted in 2007 of six counts of second-degree murder involving women who went missing from Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. Twenty additional counts were stayed.
Investigative consultant Bruce Pitt-Payne, a retired RCMP sergeant, said evidence disposal is normal in criminal cases.
“The RCMP has very strict polices on when evidence from major crimes such as murder or sex offences may be destroyed,” Pitt-Payne said. “It is in the area of 80 years or more.”
However, once investigators tender evidence to courts, it becomes the decision of the courts on what should be done with it.