A Man Nicknamed ‘The Pig Farmer Killer’ Might Be Canada’s Most Prolific Serial Killer

Canada is known for all good things. We also know it isn’t good to stereotype. In the late 1980s, and throughout the 90s, Vancouver Canada experienced an extreme uptick of missing sex-workers, runaways, or women battling a drug or mental health crisis. The Downtown Eastside neighborhood is known for its high rates of poverty, homelessness, open drug use and prostitution, and is typically where this would occur.

The story of Robert Pickton begins here. Pickton was born, raised, and lived on his farm for a majority of his life. Pickton was known to be a socially awkward man who was known to have exhibited strange behaviors, and isolated himself to a trailer, on his farm.

In the late 90s’, the Pickton family had decided to create their own charity!  It was known as the Piggy’s Palace Good Times Society, and was indeed as cheesy as it sounded, as it was listed federally to “organize, coordinate, manage and operate special events, functions, dances, shows and exhibitions on behalf of service organizations, sports organizations and other worthy groups” This ultimately ended in disaster, with a fiscal nightmare on their hands, and many neighbors being angry with their rampant drug use, and noise.

Robert Pickton went back to his life as a pig farmer, however his party days never left. Pickton became familiar with the Downtown Eastside through visits to a rendering plant located there, where he disposed of waste animal parts. While he would be at work, he would also offer various women on that strip, to come back to his farm for drugs and money.

There was always rumors of a serial killer in the Downtown Eastside, however they were loudly silenced. Even after several disappearances, the Vancouver police refused or even consider that the missing women were dead, and suggested that they had moved or had overdosed elsewhere. In 1997, there was finally a break in the case of the missing women in Canada, with connections directly tied to Mr. Pickton himself.

Wendy Lynn Eistetter agreed to meet with Pickton, in exchange for drugs and alcohol. Things turned sour, when Pickton attempted to kidnap her. After a long struggle, Pickton then came at her with a butcher knife where she fought him off, and was able to call for help. After arriving at the hospital, she realized she was too late, after Pickton reported her as a homeless, drug addict and should not be considered a competent witness.

With Pickton increasingly becoming more confident in his abilities, he started to care less and less who noticed- or so it seemed. With an even greater spike in mission women towards the later 90s, one brave employee of the pig farm decided to speak up. Bill Hiscox, described the property as creepy and described Pickton as just the same. After the RHCP ignored his claims, another employee stepped forward with news that would break the case.

Scott Chubb, came forward as an eyewitness who had personally seen illegal guns on Pickton’s farm. The RHCP also found fragments of human remains, including but not limited to, teeth, hair and small bones. Although he was arrested in 2001, he was let out on bail with lack of evidence. This changed when in 2002, during a second search warrant they found clothing and shoes; jewelry; and an asthma inhaler.

Police could never truly find a body connected to Pickton, which caused them to conclude that he would likely dismember, and feed the bodies of the women to his pigs. It would also likely explain why they found over 27 bodies worth of fragments, scattered across the farm. Pickton also exclaimed to his undercover police- cellmate “I got a murder charge on me, and forty-eight more, forty-eight more to come. Whoopee!” 

Pickton was sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole for 25 years. He is eligible in 2032.