Pickton Verdict

From Opinion 250:

"The Jury in the trial of Willie Pickton has reached a verdict.

Charged with the first degree murder of 6 women, the Jury has found the pig farmer  not guilty of First Degree murder,  but GUILTY of second degree murder in all six counts.

in the deaths of Sereena Abotsway,  Mona Wilson,  Andrea Joesbury, Marnie Frey,  Georgina Papin and  Brenda Wolfe.

Had Pickton been found Guilty of First degree murder,  it would  have meant an automatic  life sentence with no parole  for 25 years.  Now that the verdict is of  second degree murder, it is still a life sentence but there are options for parole eligibility. 

Some members of the families are not happy with the  verdict. Some screamed  as the verdict was  read.  “There is a lot of anger” said one, “The families are devastated” said another.

The jury reached it’s verdict after more than nine days of deliberation, nearly a year since the jury had been selected on December 12th.

Pickton was arrested in February of 2002.  The trial lasted 10 months., during that time, 128 witnesses testified in this case, 98 of them called by the Crown, 30 by the Defence.

Pickton faces a second endictment  for the murder of 20 other women."

I couldn’t imagine being a juror for almost a year of my life listening to the testimony of 128 people.

Hang em High

I wonder how long he’ll be required to serve before he’s eligible for parole? 

He’s still facing the other twenty counts for the rest of the victims. It’ll be interesting to see if he still plans to go to trial for those. Pretty hard to have an unbiased jury when he’s been convicted of 6 similar murders.

I don’t think he’ll ever see parole. Crown could / should apply to have him deemed a dangerous offender and he’ll die in jail.

He doesn’t seem like the brightest guy in the world, but hopefully he’ll “make a deal” and plead guilty on the rest of the charges, right?

Length of sentence depends on whether it’s going to be consecutive or concurrent… who determines that anyway?

Length of sentence depends on whether it’s going to be consecutive or concurrent… who determines that anyway?[/quote]

The short answer? The Judge does.

In the case of a trial, the Judge decides after hearing argument from both Crown and Defence Counsel. In a case like this the sentencing hearing will take days to complete. It can sometimes be like another mini trial where evidence can be called to support each side’s  argument over how much time and such.

If it’s a sentencing by way of a plea agreement between counsel, it’s usually worked out by Crown and Defence ahead of time. They put their agreement before the Judge and the Judge still decides if he/she feels it’s appropriate. In Canada a plea agreement is non-binding on the Judge, and the accused knows that, so they are rolling the dice that the Judge feels the agreement is “fair”. The Judge could literally throw the whole thing out and substitute what they want, although that doesn’t often happen.

I was listening to the radio and they said multiple murders  no parole

I would not worry about parole…this man is done with. 
He would not last 5 minutes out of jail.

Does anyone what will happen with the other 20 murders he has been charged with?  Will there be another trial?

Depends on the state of an appeal by the defense, and whether the crown believes that they can put together a strong enough case to gain a conviction on the other 20 counts.

The fact he was convicted of second degree murder is a setback for the Crown’s approach…

Hopefully, the judge will deliver a sentence that ensures that Pickton won’t be available for parole until long after he’s left our world.

“So says us all”

I hope they make a movie about this.

  he won’t last five minutes in jail if they put him in general population.