Sisters of Pickton victim says she's sickened by officer's accusations


VANCOUVER The sisters of a woman murdered by serial killer Robert Pickton say they are "sickened" after hearing that RCMP and Vancouver police officers allegedly joked and "fantasized" about how their sister may have died.

"We are very angry, especially when we know that the police could have prevented the murder of one of our sisters," said Cynthia Cardinal, the sister of Georgina Papin.

At Pickton's trial, eyewitness Lynn Ellingsen gave key testimony that she saw Pickton hang a woman from a meat hook in his barn and gut her.

Ellingsen and Pickton had picked up the woman, whom Ellingsen believes was Papin, earlier that night in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.

RCMP Cpl. Catherine Galliford, who was the spokeswoman for the Missing Women Vancouver police and RCMP Task Force, revealed in an interview Tuesday with the Vancouver Province, and in a 115-page statement, that male officers told her they had a "fantasy."

"They fantasized about Willie Pickton escaping from prison," Galliford said in her statement to RCMP Insp. Paul Darbyshire and RCMP Supt. Dave DeBolt.

"He would escape from prison, track me down, strip me naked, hang me from a meat hook and gut me like a pig," Galliford told the Vancouver Province.

Galliford, who emphasized she knows many police officers who cared deeply about the missing women, said only one other officer in the roomful of men seemed as shocked and horrified as she did.

At the Missing Women Commission of Inquiry on Wednesday, Vancouver police Deputy Chief Doug LePard, author of a 2010 report critical of the Vancouver Police Department and RCMP, admitted that former Vancouver deputy police chief John Unger referred to the dozens of missing women as "just hookers."

The inquiry is investigating why it took Vancouver police and RCMP until 2002 to catch Pickton when they were receiving detailed tips as far back as 1998.

Pickton, 62, is serving a life sentence for the murders of six women. He initially was charged with killing 20 more but those charges were stayed in 2010.

The serial killer has been linked by DNA to the deaths of 33 women and has boasted to an undercover police officer that he killed at least 16 more.

Lawyer Cameron Ward, representing the Cardinal sisters, as well as 19 other families of missing women, charged that Unger meant that drug-addicted sex workers were "a waste of police time and resources."

Cardinal said she is "appalled at how the inquiry is revealing the corruption within the VPD (Vancouver Police Department) and the RCMP."

"It is sickening when I think about how they sat around and made such horrific remarks to one of their own," said Cardinal.

"How then can society trust those that are supposed to protect us?"

LePard explained that the Vancouver Police Department didn't devote huge resources to finding the missing women because most officers didn't believe a serial killer was at work until it was too late.

Vancouver Province




Missing Women Tip Line: 1-877-687-3377

Updated: August 21, 2016