Watch CBS News

Canadian serial killer Robert Pickton, known for bringing victims to pig farm, dead after prison assault

5/31: CBS Morning News
5/31: CBS Morning News 20:34

Convicted Canadian serial killer Robert Pickton, who brought female victims to his pig farm during a crime spree near Vancouver in the late 1990s and early 2000s, has died after being assaulted in prison, authorities said Wednesday. He was 74.

Robert William Pickton
Robert William Pickton, 52, is seen in this undated image made from video. The Canadian pig farmer, accused of killing at least 26 women, was convicted of six murders at his 2007 trial. AP

The Correctional Service of Canada said in a statement that Pickton, an inmate at Port-Cartier Institution in Quebec, died in the hospital following injuries resulting from an assault involving another inmate on May 19. Pickton was assaulted at the maximum-security federal institution and then brought to an outside hospital to receive treatment. 

Authorities said in a statement they notified Pickton's next of kin as well as registered victims, "in accordance with their specified notification preferences."

A 51-year-old inmate was in custody for the Sunday assault on Pickton, police spokesman Hugues Beaulieu said earlier this month. Canada's correctional services said they were launching an investigation into the assault.

Robert "Willie" Pickton was convicted of six counts of second-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison in 2007, with the maximum parole ineligibility period of 25 years, after being charged with the murders of 26 women.

Police began searching the Pickton farm in the Vancouver suburb of Port Coquitlam more than 22 years ago in what would be a years-long investigation into the disappearances of dozens of women.

The remains or DNA of 33 women, many picked up from Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, were found on Pickton's pig farm in Port Coquitlam, British Columbia. He once bragged to an undercover police officer that he killed a total of 49 women. Pickton's confirmed victims totaled six: Sereena Abotsway, Mona Wilson, Andrea Joesbury, Brenda Ann Wolfe, Georgina Papin and Marnie Frey.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.