WARNING: This story includes some graphic details some readers may find upsetting
The monster who last week pleaded guilty to eight counts of first-degree murder for the killings of men he targeted in Toronto’s gay village, appeared at day one of his sentencing hearing on Monday.
The Court heard gruesome details about Bruce McArthur’s strategy in targeting his victims, and what he did to the victims’ bodies.
McArthur was charged for the murders of Majeed Kayhan, Soroush Mahmudi, Dean Lisowick, Selim Esen, Andrew Kinsman, Skandaraj (Skanda) Navaratnam, Kirushnakumar Kanagaratnam and Abdulbasir Faizi, whose names were read aloud by crown prosecutor Michael Cantlon.
The Guardian reports: ‘The court heard that McArthur staged photographs of his victims’ corpses, posing the bodies in a fur coat and black leather hat, and – in two cases – with a cigar between their lips. Cantlon described the extensive collection of photographs McArthur kept of his victims – many of them taken while they were alive. McArthur also shaved and stored the facial hair from his victims, Cantlon said.’
McArthur was in the middle of a ninth murder when police knocked on his door, The Independent reports: ‘Police, who had been monitoring the 67-year-old landscape gardener as a potential suspect, moved in for fears another murder was about to take place. When they arrived, they found McArthur had chained the man – identified in court only as John – to a four-poster bed and placed a black bag over his head. He was taping his victim’s mouth shut at the moment police knocked.’
Victims’ families and friends also read statements, remembering their lost loved ones.
Watch a report from CBC:
Toronto police have been blasted for neglect in pursuing the disappearances of men for years in the gay village, and for how they dealt with McArthur whom they had come into contact with several times.
The Globe and Mail reports: “Police interviewed Mr. McArthur twice in the years before his arrest in January, 2018. In addition to the 2016 interview, officers talked to him in 2013, after police were told Mr. McArthur had a romantic relationship with Skandaraj Navaratnam, the first man to go missing, and that he had visited his third victim, Majeed Kayhan, before his disappearance. An internal review into the way the 2016 incident was handled was ordered later.”
Sergeant Paul Gauthier will be charged with insubordination and neglect of duty on Tuesday morning, the Globe and Mail adds: “Sgt. Gauthier’s lawyer, Lawrence Gridin, said the charge is connected to an incident in 2016. The Globe has previously reported that in 2016, Mr. McArthur was interviewed by police after a man said Mr. McArthur choked him during sex. No criminal charges were laid at the time.”
Gauthier’s lawyer released a statement on Friday night: “The decision not to charge Bruce McArthur for the 2016 incident was made in conjunction with Detective Gauthier’s supervisor and based on the information available at the time. Det. Gauthier conducted a proper investigation and fully documented the arrest of McArthur so that the information was available to all other investigators. McArthur’s monstrous nature was difficult to uncover because he led a life of extreme deception, not because of anything to do with the 2016 arrest. Det. Gauthier has great sympathy for the victims and the community.”