Serial killer searched for garbage, transit, fingerprint information online

A murder trial in Winnipeg heard Jeremy Skibicki searched for bus and garbage collection schedules online

Warning: There are details in this story from a murder trial. Please read with care.

The definition of a serial killer is one of the questions Jeremy Skibicki searched online during the period he brutally murdered four Indigenous women in Winnipeg, according to a crime intelligence analyst.

Riley Johansson, a civilian member of the Winnipeg Police Service, testified Skibicki, 37, also checked for garbage pickup times, transit bus schedules and forensic information about fingerprints and DNA.

Johansson was the first witness called by the Crown Tuesday as the Court of King’s Bench trial before Chief Justice Glenn Joyal entered its third week.

Skibicki has admitted to killing Morgan Harris, Marcedes Myran, Rebecca Contois and an unidentified woman given the Ojibwe spirit name Mashkode Bizhiki’ikwe meaning Buffalo Woman between March 15, 2022 and May 16, 2022. He has pleaded not criminally responsible due to mental disorder.

The Crown is seeking to convict him on four, first-degree murder charges by proving he had the intent and mental capacity to plan and commit the “racially motivated” crimes.

Johansson created a snapshot of Skibicki’s online and social media activity around the time of each killing from the half million “artifacts” he said were downloaded from Skibicki’s computer tower.

The electronic analysis helped confirm evidence police gathered on the ground and Skibicki revealed during a lengthy interview with homicide detectives following his arrest on May 17, 2022.

For example, Johansson told Crown attorney Christian Vanderhooft he found an online message saying Skibicki “was coming off (magic) mushrooms” at the time Buffalo Woman was killed. That is information the killer shared with investigators.

Johansson said Skibicki searched “when is garbage collected in Winnipeg” – information he told investigators he needed to dispose of the women’s remains in neighbourhood garbage bins and dumpsters.

The Bear Clan Patrol missing persons poster for Morgan Harris. Photo: Facebook

Johansson, acting on a warrant police obtained for Skibicki’s computer and Facebook page, confirmed Skibicki sold a Baby Phat sweater Buffalo Woman was wearing on Facebook Marketplace for $40 cash after he killed her on or about March 15, 2022.

Police said Harris was murdered on or about May 1, 2022, while Myran was murdered on or about May 4, 2022. Contois was killed on May 16, 2022.

Following the murder of Harris, Johansson said Skibicki checked the Bear Clan Patrol’s missing persons page on Facebook “more than 80 times” and perused an online list of “missing persons Manitoba.”

He said in other searches Skibicki wanted to know if Winnipeg had a noise bylaw and how long it took “for hot water to come back.”

Skibicki has confessed to dismembering two victims after drowning them in his bathtub. The other two he said were strangled or choked to death.

He also told investigators he “defiled” the women’s bodies with sex acts. Only Contois’ remains have been located.

Johannson told court he couldn’t confirm Skibicki sent the messages and searched the internet, but said it was someone using his computer, with his password and connected to his home wifi.

The transit bus search history shows trips being planned from his home address to N’Dinewamak, a homeless shelter where he is seen on video meeting Harris, 39, and, subsequently, Myran, 26.

Johansson even learned Skibicki “unfriended” Contois, 24, on Facebook after he killed her.

The Crown has said the women were vulnerable, living on the street and dependent on homeless shelters. Both Contois and Harris knew Skibicki, court has heard.

Skibicki told investigators he offered the victims a place to stay and drugs in exchange for sex.

The Bear Clan Patrol missing persons poster for Marcedes Myran. Photo: Facebook

He said he suffers from borderline personality disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder, but court has not heard if he was diagnosed by a medical professional and being treated.

At one time, Skibicki or someone using his computer credentials searched “explosive anger disorder” and whether “Muslims behead people with knives,” said Johansson.

Police found a knife with the “biological material” of two victims in Skibicki’s one-bedroom apartment and court was told Tuesday, a photo on him of Facebook holding what appeared to be the same knife.

His Google and Chrome searches were peppered with questions about religous sayings, the hours of stores selling packaging material, police access to surveillance video and whether washing clothes in detergent cleaned off DNA.

Read More: 

Staffer testifies serial killer said he went to homeless shelter to find a victim

Police find DNA of another 12 women at self-confessed killer’s apartment in Winnipeg 

On the day Contois’ remains were discovered in a garbage bin near his home, Johansson said Skibicki looked online to see if “fingerprints only get on smooth surfaces” and “how long police keep fingerprints.”

Johansson also examined messages Skibicki exchanged with his ex-wife, who testified last week and asked the media not to name her. In what was an online conversation over several weeks, the two revisited their brief marriage and the issues that drove them apart.

Skibicki, who describes himself as Christian and a white supremacist, hinted he had done something “bad” that would put him away “for three life sentences.” His ex-wife, whom court heard knew nothing of the murders, promised to pray for him and suggested he “own whatever” he did.

“I can’t even say online,” Johansson quoted Skibicki as saying, “and you have no idea how this affects me.”

The trial is scheduled to resume Wednesday.

Support is available for anyone affected by these reports and the issue of missing and murdered Indigenous people. Immediate emotional assistance and crisis support are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week through a national hotline at 1-844-413-6649.

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