The judge in the trial of James McCullough said that he “demonstrated a shocking disregard for human life” before handing down her sentencing.
McCullough was sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 25 years in the gruesome death of Alex Fraser.
He will also serve a four year concurrent term for the charge of indignity to a human body.
McCullough was found guilty of first degree murder after he and Fraser took a cab from Orangeville to a London hotel room where he murdered and dismembered someone he considered a friend.
The judge said McCullough exploited both the vulnerability and trust of his friend, robbing Alex of a future, and robbing Alex’s friends of a future with him.
Victim impact statements were read by the Fraser family as McCullough sat expressionless in the middle of the room.
“Alex was quite ambitious,” said his uncle John Southcott. “He loved computers and technology and loved camping with his dad. He was a gentle soul, polite, and a kind person.”
His aunt, Elaine Southcott, read a statement which was interrupted by tears.
“We will not forget Alex. We will remember him for the man he was. We will wonder about the man he… And we will miss him very much.”
The judge called McCullough’s actions “planned and deliberate,” and said that grisly rap lyrics found written by McCullough exposed his desire to cut someone up and eat them.
Outside the courtroom, John Southcott said hearing the guilty verdict brought them closure.
“It’s been two and a half years since we lost Alex. Although nothing can bring him back now, we have closure. We can and will move forward, this is what Alex would want and expect from us,” he read from a statement. “This was an unspeakable, unnecessary, and heinous crime. We have no doubt that, given the opportunity, the convicted individual would re-offend. Let’s hope that never happens, and that a life sentence really means life.”
Alex’s father, Scott Fraser, agreed, saying he’s glad McCullough can no longer hurt anyone.
“It was satisfying that he’s never going to get out again. What happens to him in jail, happens to him in jail. I’m just glad he’s not going to hurt anybody else, especially not in our little, small town of Orangeville.”
Both Alex’s parents said they wanted to be in court for their son, and that they hadn’t heard the horrifying details about how he was killed.
“It’s bittersweet, isn’t it?” said Jackie Fraser. “We got our justice, but it will not bring Alex back, and that’s a shame.”
Before sentencing wrapped up, McCullough was asked if he had anything to say to the court, to which he replied, “No.”
McCullough’s sentence also carries with it a weapons prohibition for 10 years. He must also submit his DNA to a criminal database.