Nothing can bring back his brutally murdered victims, Marie-France Comeau and Jessica Lloyd, nor repair the broken families he tore apart.
Tweed sex assault victims Jane Doe, who was a very young mother of a weeks-old infant when Williams attacked her, and Laurie Massicotte will have nightmares forever. It's hard to imagine the trauma they suffered, and will continue to suffer.
Hopefully, the other victims, whose most intimate spaces and places were invaded and violated by Williams can find peace. But I suspect they may be lying in bed right now thinking, there but for the grace of God ...
Which is why, despite how the Ontario Provincial Police thinks it has neatly wrapped up this case, I keep tripping over the loose ends.
I have already covered off the way the media have been handling Williams predilection for photographing himself in little girls' panties. In any case, Elizabeth Pickett and Bina Becker have done a much more thorough job of analyzing that angle. Have a read here, here and here. (Elizabeth also considers military culture in the wake of the trial here.)
So what's left?
How about what strikes me as police ineptitude and insensitivity?
First of all, I highly recommend you take 45 minutes to watch an edition of CBC's the fifth estate from last month. It's available online here. Titled ''Above Suspicion,'' it reveals a lot about Williams' invasions -- dozens of invasions -- of women's homes, bedrooms and drawers (and no, that's not a pun.)
Stick with it and you'll be asking yourself, how could the cops have blown this badly?
At least have a look at the fifth's map here. Notice anything?
Like maybe a street map and some coloured pins on an OPP wall would have shown a pattern of invasions with similar characteristics?
Don't forget, in the wake of the Bernardo-Homolka case, the Campbell report was stinging in its criticism of how the cops handled the case.
Campbell, who conducted a public inquiry into the Bernardo probe, went on to conclude that there was an "astounding and dangerous lack of co-operation between police forces" and a litany of errors, miscalculations and disputes.
The failure to share information prevented police from identifying Bernardo as the terrorizing "Scarborough rapist," whose victims were spread across several police jurisdictions.
Elizabeth takes a run at the Campbell report and how it relates to this case here.
Every single one of Russell's crimes -- except for Comeau's murder in Brighton -- happened within the OPP's Eastern Region. And, while Belleville has its own police force, and Orleans is served by the Ottawa force, somebody should have put it together.
But it wasn't until Lloyd went missing, and the Belleville police under Chief Cory McMullan got involved, that all the boys started playing together.
It's true that many victims did not report break-ins because they did not know about them or they believed the police would laugh them off. After all, it's just another panty raid?
The very fact that some victims hesitated speaks to how women fear that their complains will be discounted.
There’s a troubling number missing from the latest report from Statistics Canada on criminal victimization. I went looking for the figure because it was there in the last version of the report, in 2004 – it showed that just 8% of all sexual assaults in 2004 were reported to police, a puny 42,000 assaults reported among the total of 512,000 committed. Expressed another way, less than 1 out of every 10 sexual assaults committed was reported to police. It is a pitiful and shameful statistic, a reflection of the fact that despite decades of progress in dealing with sexual abuse and exploitation, authorities have done little to make the process of reporting abuse and confronting abusers less frightening and intimidating. The vast majority of victims still suffer in silence. Statistics Canada refuses to release the figure for 2009. What if things are getting worse? What if they are getting much worse? I’ve produced a disturbing statistic that suggests, if the number is valid, that far fewer sexual assault victims are reporting to police.
Considering how many news outlets treated Williams ''fetish,'' it's no big surprise to many that women will put up and shut up.
Again, this speaks to how the police discounted these violations: They issued no warning to Tweed citizens until after Massicotte was attacked.
Not surprisingly, they were very disrespectful, at least according to Massicotte who fled the court room this week, of what the two sexual assault survivors went through.
Today she emailed. Here's some of what she wrote (I added the boldface):
Out of the respect of the deceased,I will not even attempt to be heard @ this time, submit my impact statement, nor show my face or presence in that court in Belleville since my regretful appearance Monday A.M., when me & my family literally fled that court house @ 11:20, the 1st possible dignified break after hearing THE GUILTY PLEA on all counts with the sexual assaults being blended with the other less serious, none the less disturbing home invasions. I feel that there is a time & place for everything & it is my belief for the living DEAD and their families. Call me over sensitive but those are my true feelings on how this case is being conducted as a survivor of his Hanois (sic) violent acts. So be it! I once again feel used & disrespected by the Crown & the police.
I feel liked chopped liver & I can't even comprehend how the little one is feeling. Now if I could get a message out to the masses it would be-if you survive a violent act of sex don't report it, just run for cover & find your own protection minus the police & the system they represent.
As Massicotte has repeatedly said, she felt the police could have done a much better job on all levels, from plain old detective work to treating victims with more respect.
Maybe Lloyd and Comeau would still be alive if they had.
Meanwhile the media have gone gaga for interrogator Det. Sgt. Jim Smyth.
While there is no question that the skilfull Smyth showed incredible calm and patience in getting Williams to confess, it's not as if the police didn't have a basement full of panties as evidence.
What's more, it seems obvious that the killer, considering how he would eventually transfer his assets to his wife, was anxious to avoid horrendous legal fees on what would be a losing case. He's a sociopath but he's not stupid.
Today, incredibly, the OPP put out a news release congratulating themselves on a job well done.
Well yes. After all, they had the media spotlight all this week on their dog and pony show. Williams is in the slammer. You can all go home now. Nothing to see here.
And yet, as the the fifth estate documentary reports, it took a few locals driving in a truck late at night to spot Williams' SUV parked in a field near Lloyd's house to put it all together.
I think an inquest is in order.