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Child porn found on Russell Williams' computer, but no charges laid: book

Police found child porn on serial sex criminal Russell Williams’ computer but laid no charges in exchange for him pleading guilty to murder and sexual assault, a new book says.

The former commander of Canada’s largest military airfield wouldn’t admit to downloading pictures of teenaged girls in sexual positions, Globe and Mail reporter Timothy Appleby writes in “A New Kind of Monster.”

A source quoted in the book said Williams couldn’t face the stigma attached to child pornography, though he was willing to plead guilty to murder, rape and a series of bizarre sexually motivated break-ins.

“This is a guy who structured his life around how he saw others act, and that’s how his morality base came about,” said the source, who was involved in the case.

“In the military, you can kill people, it’s accepted … it’s within the realm of human behaviour. And in war, rape is within that realm as well. The one thing that isn’t, and stands outside that, is (sexual abuse of) children.”

“There’s no one else within his group that engages in that, so that would make him truly alone.”

Williams, 48, was convicted in October of first-degree murder in the sex slayings of Cpl. Marie-France Comeau, 37, of Brighton, Ont., and Jessica Lloyd, 27, of Belleville, Ont.

He also pleaded guilty to 82 fetish break-and-enters and thefts as well as two sexual assaults.

Williams methodically chronicled and catalogued his crimes, shooting videos and still photos of himself in the act and amassing a huge collection of undergarments stolen from women and girls. Dozens of gruesome photos were shown during his trial.

Still, little is known about what sparked Williams’ double life and turned him into a predator so late in life.

For most of his life, Williams “was able to control himself and contain himself, but there was a fuse burning,” Appleby said Tuesday.

“I don’t think there was an external catalyst that suddenly turned him into a killer. I think it was an internal decision that he made that he was going to go up the ladder,” he said.

“I think the good side of Russell Williams — and there was a good side — was really quite genuine,” rather than a front meant to dupe those around him, he said.

“It’s just that the dark side, the evil side, though that’s a word I try very hard not to use … became much more powerful than that.”

The book argues that Williams’ sense of shame, strong emotions and close personal attachments set him apart from most serial killers.

Investigators and justice officials quickly realized Williams cared about his wife, the military and his cats — emotions that break with the traditional profile of a sociopath, the book reads.

What’s more, “Williams knew that what he had done was wickedly wrong, and he knew so while he was doing it. And it was the fact that he did so anyway that made him so immensely dangerous.”

Though Williams isn’t officially considered a serial killer — the term applies to those who kill at least three people — justice officials are convinced he would have continued killing if given the chance, according to the book.

Williams is currently serving a life sentence in Kingston Penitentiary with no possibility of parole for 25 years.

The Canadian Forces stripped him of his rank of colonel after his conviction and burned his uniform — a move that some military veterans say is unprecedented.