A Toronto historian who studies and has written books on serial killers and their patterns says if Bruce McArthur is an alleged “typical serial killer,” it’s likely he’s been killing since the late 1970s.
Peter Vronsky, the author of Serial Killers – The Method and Madness of Monsters, said a typical male serial killer begins killing his victims when he is around 28 years old.
Vronsky said leaving body parts in flower planters is not untypical, adding serial killing is mostly about control.
“It’s not something he needs to do. This is something he is compelled to do,” said Vronsky.
“It’s his psychology. It’s his way for him to extend control over his victims.”
The Ryerson University professor said what we could be seeing is aspects of necrophilia, a desire for the dead, and it comes in various stages from a romantic desire to the sleeping beauty syndrome, to wanting to desire corpses.
Vronsky said Toronto has not seen a serial killer similar to what is alleged of Bruce McArthur since the 1950s.
“This is certainly new for Toronto police to investigate,” Vronsky said.
Police said they have been looking at hundreds of missing persons cases, and Vronsky said criminal profilers will likely be advising police to look back to the 1970s.
McArthur is accused of the first-degree murder of five men.
Human remains from six people have been found in large planters found on a property where the 66-year-old would store his landscaping tools.
Only one of those bodies has been positively identified as that of 49-year-old Andrew Kinsman who went missing in June 2017 from Cabbagetown.
McArthur will return to court on Feb. 14.