Borutski trial part eight: The verdict

After more than 14 hours of deliberation, the jury returned to the Ottawa courtroom shortly before 3 pm today to deliver its verdict. The six men and five women (one woman was excused due to a family emergency) found Borutski guilty of first degree murder in the shooting deaths of Anastasia Kuzyk and Nathalie Warmerdam and guilty of second degree murder in the strangulation death of Carol Culleton.

Sentencing will take place on December 5/6 in Pembroke.

There will be time later to reflect on what this verdict means, but today is not that day.

Today, we should honour the lives of Anastasia, Nathalie and Carol, so we can blur just a little bit the memories of how the lives of these three vibrant women were ended.

Today, we should celebrate the strength of the frontline workers who came together to support these women’s families and communities  in the wake of these senseless deaths.

Today, we should remind ourselves of the strength we have when we come together, as we have before and will again. I think Marge Piercy has put this better than anyone:

The Low Road

What can they do

to you? Whatever they want.

They can set you up, they can

bust you, they can break

your fingers, they can

burn your brain with


blur you with drugs till you

can’t walk, can’t remember,

they can

take your child, wall up

your lover. They can do


you can’t stop them

from doing. How can you

stop them? Alone, you can fight,

you can refuse, you can

take what revenge you can

but they roll over you.

But two people fighting

back to back can cut through

a mob, a snake-dancing file

can break a cordon, an army

can meet an army.

Two people can keep each other

sane, can give support, conviction,

love, massage, hope, sex.

Three people are a delegation,

a committee, a wedge. With four

you can play bridge and start

an organization. With six

you can rent a whole house,

eat pie for dinner with no

seconds, and hold a fundraising party.

A dozen makes a demonstration.

A hundred fill a hall.

A thousand have solidarity and your own newsletter,

ten thousand, power and your own paper,

a hundred thousand, your own media;

ten million, your own country.

It goes on one at a time,

it starts when you care

to act, it starts when you do

it again after they said no.

It starts when you say We

and know who you mean, and each

day you mean one more.

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