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Petition demands second Pickton trial

Relatives of 20 missing women among first 200 signatures on online appeal to Oppal

Lori Culbert
Vancouver sun

January 3, 2008

VANCOUVER - An online petition is demanding B.C.'s Crown prosecutors go ahead with a second trial against Robert (Willie) Pickton to determine whether the convicted serial killer murdered another 20 women.

Relatives of some of the 20 women started the new year by signing the petition, posted Jan. 1 by an Ottawa resident who closely watched Pickton's first trial, which ended last month with six second-degree murder convictions.

"I feel it's extremely important that they go ahead with the second trial," Lilliane Beaudoin, sister of Dianne Rock, said in an interview from her home in Welland, Ont.

"We need justice too. This is my sister. We need someone to be held accountable,"

Beaudoin, her husband and her mother all signed the petition, which by its second day had about 200 signatures.

The former Port Coquitlam pig farmer was charged with killing 26 women who disappeared from the Downtown Eastside.

A Supreme Court judge split his charges into two trials, fearing one mega-trial would be too difficult for a single jury.

Pickton was sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 25 years after the six murder convictions at his first trial, which was a long, complicated legal proceeding.

Advocates for the other 20 women fear authorities may not go ahead with the next trial.

"My sister needs her time in court," Beaudoin said.

"I have a lot of unanswered questions. This is my one and only means of getting answers."

Like Beaudoin, Judy Trimble has been encouraging family and friends to write to politicians to lobby for the second trial. Trimble is the mother of Cara Ellis, another of the 20 women Pickton is charged with killing.

"We're very optimistic and hopeful that [the trial] will be held," said Trimble, of Calgary.

Pam Eyre, who organized the petition from her Ottawa home, is not connected to anyone missing from Vancouver but attended memorials for women who disappeared from Edmonton when she lived in Alberta.

"It's a huge, huge issue. This petition isn't going to be able to speak to it all, but it will let the Crown at least know there are a lot of people who want to see [Pickton] stand trial for these additional murders," Eyre said.

"These families need to know the public really does care about their family members and they absolutely deserve to see justice done for their loved ones."

Prosecutor Geoff Gaul, who speaks for the Crown in B.C., said a decision has not yet been made regarding the second trial.

"What happens in the future, whether we carry on with that prosecution, is an issue that will be determined at a later date."

Gaul would not comment specifically on the petition, but said generally that the decision will be based on the available evidence and the public interest.

Potential dates for the second trial are to be discussed in B.C. Supreme Court on Jan. 24.

The petition is addressed to B.C. Attorney-General Wally Oppal, whose office deferred all comments to Crown prosecutors.

Some pundits and defence lawyers have said there is likely no need for an expensive second trial since Pickton has received the heftiest sentence available.

Pickton pleaded not guilty to killing 26 women, who are all on a police poster of 65 women who vanished from Vancouver between 1978 and 2001.

One of the strongest messages on the petition is from Debra Chartier, daughter of Janet Henry, one of the missing women who Pickton is not accused of killing.

"Do the right thing. Our loved ones have been taken from us and this is the least you can do for ignoring the situation for so long. If this was your mom, daughter, sister, auntie, etc., I'm sure you would want the same and no less. They meant the world to us," said Chartier, of Prince George.

The petition is at http://www.gopetition.com/online/15976.html.

lculbert@png.canwest.com

 CanWest News Service 2007

 

Robert "Willie" Pickton should stand trial for remaining 20 murder charges he faces
Signatures
Published by Pam Eyre on Jan 01, 2008
Category: Law & Order
Region: Canada
Target: New Westminster, BC Crown Prosecutors/Attorney-General Wally Oppal

Description/History:
On February 22, 2002, Robert Pickton was charged with the first two of what would eventually become 26 First-degree murder charges.

These charges were for the murders of Serena Abotsway and Mona Wilson. On December 9, 2007 Robert Pickton was convicted of six counts of second-degree murder for killing or having a hand in killing Sereena Abotsway, Mona Wilson, Andrea Joesbury, Brenda Ann Wolfe, Georgina Faith Papin and Marnie Frey.

As of December 10, 2007 neither the Crown nor Attorney-General Wally Oppal have determined if Robert Pickton would stand trial for the remaining 20 first-degree murder charges he faces. The trial date for the murder of these 20 women is set to begin on January 17, 2008.

The names of the 20 women Robert Pickton is charged with killing are:
Andrea Borhaven
Heather Bottomley
Heather Chinnock
Wendy Crawford
Sarah deVries
Tiffany Drew
Cara Ellis
Cynthia Feliks
Jennifer Furminger
Inga Hall
Helen Hallmark
Tanya Holyk
Sherry Irving
Angela Jardine
Patricia Johnson
Debra Jones
Kerry Koski
Jacquelene McDonell
Diana Melnick
Dianne Rock

Petition:
We, the undersigned, call on the New Westminster, BC Crown and British Columbia Attorney-General Wally Oppal to pursue the first-degree murder trial against Robert Pickton for the alleged murders of 20 women as scheduled to begin January 17, 2008.

Each and every woman deserves justice, society deserves justice and family members absolutely deserves to see justice done. There is no other way for the hundreds of family members to find closure.

Robert Pickton must stand trial so that all relevant evidence can be properly tested and so that the families affected may see justice done.

The Robert "Willie" Pickton should stand trial for remaining 20 murder charges he faces petition to New Westminster, BC Crown Prosecutors/Attorney-General Wally Oppal was written by Pam Eyre and is hosted free of charge at GoPetition. http://www.gopetition.com/online/15976.html


GoPetition Pty Ltd 2007

 

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Updated: August 21, 2016