Sunday, December 09, 2007

Twenty-six women

Robert "Willie" Pickton was declared a murderer. He didn't act alone, he had the help of the Vancouver Police Department.

The women who went missing on the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver were troubled and challenged, but they weren't alone. People missed them. Robert Pickton thought he could scoop up these women and no one would notice, but people did. Their friends noticed when they couldn't be found. Their families noticed when their daughters stopped calling. Their children noticed when their mothers stopped visiting.

Had women started disappearing from any other neighbourhood in Vancouver, the police would have done their diligent duty. Instead they chose to believe the stereotypes of people and life on the Downtown Eastside. The stereo types that no one knew these women. That these women didn't have families. That whatever their fate, they and we were better off.

Not only would the police not act on the anomalous disappearances, but they turned on one of their own members who pointed out the anomaly. When the trials are done, there will still be Kim Rossmo to deal with. In 1998 Rossmo, a member of the Vancouver Police Department created geographic profiling and determined the number of missing women in the geographic area was unusual. The Vancouver police fired him, he contends, without cause.

When that case is finally brought to trial, after we are finished with all off Pickton's accusations, we will finally know how the Vancouver police operate. When we know how they operate, maybe then we can find out why our mothers, daughters and friends were allowed to go disappear without question.

Twenty-six women.

Related Links
The CBC's coverage of the Pickton Trial

Texas State University where Dr. Kim Rossmo found people who appreciate his work
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