Manitoba regional minister and Canadian public safety minister Vic Toews said despite the horrors of the crimes of predators like Russell Williams, Canada will not be revisiting a debate on the death penalty.
Toews made the comments this afternoon while appearing on CBC’s show Power and Politics.
Russell Williams is the former air force commander who Monday pled guilty to two charges of first degree murder, two charges of rape and 82 charges related to his theft of women’s underwear from homes in Ottawa and eastern Ontario.
His trial underway this week in Belleville, Ont., is unleashing graphic details of his crimes including the murders of Jessica Lloyd and Marie-France Comeau while he was in command of the country’s largest air force base in Trenton, Ont.
The prosecutors in the case are not playing the videos Williams made of his attacks saying the details are graphic enough without airing the actual videos.
The details, reported widely, are indeed horrific, and Toews said he is refusing to watch any coverage of the trial because he doesn’t think reporting all the details serves the public interest. He also said it "brutalizes" the victims’ families.
"I choose to exercise self censorship," he said.
Toews also told host Evan Solomon there will be no resurrection of the debate on capital punishment under his watch, noting the Supreme Court has already ruled it unconstitutional.
"I think we can manage our criminal justice system without capital punishment," Toews said.
"As far as I’m concerned that debate is done."