Male model and bisexual porn star Luka Magnotta.
When a suspicious package arrived at Conservative Party headquarters on Tuesday, Jenni Byrne, the party’s political director, took it upon herself to open it. The foot was inside, and there was a terrible smell, which was profoundly disturbing for everyone.
Byrne called the police, who came and took the package. Journalists soon made the link to a maggoty torso that was discovered in a suitcase in a garbage pile in Montreal.
Police traced the bar code on the package, and discovered a second package at a postal sorting station in Ottawa, containing a left hand, that was bound for the Liberal Party of Canada’s headquarters, just a few blocks from the Conservative Party.
By Wednesday afternoon, Montreal police had found an incredibly gory scene in a blood-soaked Montreal apartment and were able to put out a Canada-wide warrant for Luka Magnotta, a former gay porn performer who was born in Scarborough, Ont., in 1982 with the name Eric Clinton Newman.
Magnotta is alleged — by animal lovers who tracked him in a Facebook group — to have previously posted four videos of himself torturing and killing kittens. Killing animals is often a first step for serial killers before they turn to people.
He appears to have posted on Friday what looks like a horrible video of a man murdering, sexually assaulting and dismembering a young man. Police have not confirmed that it’s the victim in question. I don’t advise you to watch the video.
Internet amateur detectives who enjoy looking at gory videos and commenting on them tentatively identified him as the same guy who killed the kittens.
Apparently, he is a former friend of convicted serial killer Karla Homolka, who has been free from prison since 2005, in spite of her conviction in connection with the murders of three teenage girls, including her sister, in the 1990s.
Unlike Homolka’s husband and partner in crime, Paul Bernardo, who didn’t want to be discovered, the perpetrator in this case appears to be motivated by a desire for attention, which he is now receiving from a rapt media.
By mailing body parts to political parties, the suspect guaranteed that he would be the focus of intense media interest in Canada and around the world.
Like Anders Behring Breivik, the Norwegian psycho who killed 77 people in a publicity-seeking killing spree, this killer wants us to pay attention to him. And we don’t really have any choice, do we?
We are fascinated by serial killers. From Jack the Ripper to Russell Williams, stories about pleasure killers strikes a chord in us, because they touch on our powerful unconscious fear of death and the darkest corners of the human mind.
Magnotta has left a wide trail on the Internet, drawing attention to himself however he could.
He did a mawkish interview with the Toronto Sun in 2007, complaining that he had been unfairly linked to Homolka.
In 2009, he wrote a blog post on how to erase your traces and disappear completely, which suggests, creepily enough, it might not be easy for the police to find him.
In December of 2010, he appears to have posted his first (really, really horrible) kitten video, followed by another one a year later.
In March of this year, he appears to have launched a blog, entitled Necrophiliac Serial Killer Luka Magnotta, in which he confesses to a sexual desire for corpses.
“I don’t see myself as some creepy pervert,” he wrote. “I’m just somebody who has feelings, real feelings, for dead men.”
From the glamour shots he used to spread about to his macabre blog from this spring, you can trace his electronic footprints.
I don’t think we benefit from paying close attention to people like Magnotta, Bernardo and Williams. I don’t think they tell us much about the human condition, but we can’t look away.
Luka Magnotta wanted our attention. I wish we could turn away, and not reward him by giving him what he wants, but we won’t.