Feb. 8 (UPI) — Admitted Toronto serial killer Bruce McArthur was given a life sentence in prison Friday in the deaths of eight men.
McArthur, 67, received eight concurrent life sentences from Justice John McMahon, and will not be eligible for parole for 25 years, when he’s 91. Each count carried a mandatory life sentence. The judge’s only decision was has whether to sentence him to concurrent or consecutive sentences. Concurrent means McArthur will serve the sentences simultaneously.
Prosecutors sought a life sentence with no chance of parole before 50 years.
McMahon said Friday he had no doubt that McArthur would have killed again if he’d not been arrested last year. He added that McArthur’s admission of guilt was a mitigating factor in the sentence.
The week-long sentencing hearing followed McArthur pleading guilty to eight counts of first-degree murder. It included graphic testimony about the deaths and the disposal of the bodies. His admission eliminated the need for a trial. On Monday, prosecutor Michael Cantlon warned those in the courtroom that disturbing details of the crimes would be discussed, and those in attendance should “think carefully about your need to be here.”
All eight victims were gay and killed in Toronto’s predominately gay neighborhood, known as “the Village.” Some were friends of McArthur; all were strangled with a rope and pipe and McArthur took photographs of their bodies after their deaths.
When McArthur admitted guilt, lead investigator Det. David Dickinson said, “It has spared the community and those who knew the victims a lengthy trial. I believe that this is the best possible outcome for the families and the community.”
The last victim, Andrew Kinsman, was superintendent of McArthur’s apartment building. A computer belonging to McArthur contained over 100 photos of Kinsman, including 18 taken after his death in which he is posed, naked, with a rope around his neck and a metal bar attached to the rope.
Parts of the eight men’s bodies were later found in decorative planters at a home where McArthur worked as a landscaper.