Why Didn't We Know?

Why Didn't We Know?

2016, Crime  -   13 Comments
Ratings: 8.13/10 from 69 users.

Basil Borutski had a lengthy criminal record dating back to 1977. A significant portion of these records were marred by incidents of domestic abuse, threats of violence and uncontrolled drinking. Over the years, the vast majority of these charges were dropped and obscured from public view. That was until three women - Anastasia Kuzyk, Nathalie Warmerdam and Carol Culleton - were brutally murdered within a matter of hours near the quaint town of Wilno, Ontario in September of 2015. The new documentary Why Didn't We Know?, produced by CBC News, examines the failures of the justice system in protecting these women from a known menace.

Each of these women were lured by Borutski during vulnerable and uncertain periods in their lives, and were largely unaware of his previous skirmishes with law enforcement. Two of them were savagely beaten by him on occasion, and all three were fearful of him. When his victims found the courage to press charges against their abuser, the courts did little to penalize him for his crimes. The lack of follow-through on these charges inadvertently placed even more women in danger by empowering him to continue in his reign of abuse. These failings set the stage for a ticking time bomb that each player felt powerless to stop.

The filmmakers interview the family members and close friends of each victim, and their emotionally raw testimonies expose a system that abandoned the very same citizens it was formed to protect. We also learn the horrifyingly twisted mindset of Borustiski himself through a telephone conversation conducted with CBC News reporter Gillian Findlay. Though he doesn't deny his perpetration of their murders, he nevertheless chastises the reporter for failing to understand how he has been the victim of vindictive women who were out to soil his name.

Domestic violence is a troubling and widespread cancer that afflicts every corner of society. The horrifying narrative that informs Why Didn't We Know? shows the need for greater sensitivity when recognizing the warning signs that lead up to these incidents of abuse, and the urgency of judicial reform in stopping their escalation.

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8 months ago

At 17min, if he refeused to sign, back in jail. Refuse again, back in jail. I know these really dont deter or at many times stop these killers, but it might give the victims time to get away.

1 year ago

This man is a snivelling coward, it is a pity Canada does not have the death penalty

1 year ago

Women will always be abused because those in charge do not care, indeed most of the men in official power have probably abused women themselves.

6 years ago

Geez..that guy needed killin' in the worst way.

Lou de Torres
7 years ago

Perhaps the primary purpose of any society is to protect women and children. It's just that simple. A society that fails in this is a failed society -- regardless of any other attributes.

7 years ago

There are very few men who are batterers/abusers, yet the "system" (police, judiciary, politicians) is composed predominantly of males, who like the majority of males in general, fear aggressive protection/enforcement will result in women abusing the system to hurt them. Batterers cannot be changed by any program; and the more intelligent ones are most likely to vigorously deny allegations over and over and over again---until skeptics give them the benefit of the doubt--even at the risk of their own peril. Women, ironically, can also be the quickest to take their side, believe lies that a previous partner was crazy and/or dishonest. But over time there are a plethora of individuals who have known him and having seen some aspect of his darker side, avoid him instinctively. They, like many victims who survive violence want to move on with their lives and fear retribution. At the same time, others may feel a sense of shame for having believed his deception. While society does need to change to prosecute abusers and offer greater protection to victims, all young people need to be educated early on the signs/symptoms of abuse and how to seek help. Because while it is often insecurity that results in women (especially those recently divorced or having gone through a break-up) seeking out a partner without considering his character, it is inexcusable on their part that they put innocent children at risk in the process. And those who are exposed are more likely to suffer mental disorders and/or become violent as adults---keeping the cycle of abuse going.

7 years ago

What a dumb POS. Her trying to talk to that m*ron, was classic insecure narcissist. I mean we all need to know what led him to kill three innocent women who wanted nothing to do with him right? What a joke. That part was pointless and detracted from this doc quite a bit. He is a delusion, homicidal freak. That was evident without the phone call.

7 years ago

The men in that area should have dealt with this bully long ago. And if these women had carried handguns they might be alive today. Oh yeah, we're talking about Canada, where the men have been pussified and carrying handguns is basically illegal. And if you think the police are going to be around to protect you when you need it you're a fool. And a future victim.

7 years ago

Most Canadians think of Canada as a good country and that is true in many ways however Canada is also a country where thousands of women have been murdered or gone missing. The judicial system has failed them as it has most Canadians because it is an overly expensive, overly complicated mess. Too many people in this screwed up system put their own interests before those of the people who deserve justice.

7 years ago

Think the professional parasite encourage this sort of thing to keep them in business...Imagine if we had courts with the jury being able to ask question not some pedophile judge

7 years ago

Pretty good documentary 6/10

7 years ago

This guy should have been confronted by the men who knew about his past, cripes they all knew for crying out loud if they had done ''something'' like....these women would be alive !