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Ex-wife of admitted serial killer testifies about violent and sexually abusive relationship

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Warning: This article contains details that may be disturbing to readers. Discretion is advised.

The ex-wife of admitted serial killer Jeremy Skibicki detailed a violent and sexually abusive relationship in court Thursday.

CTV News is not naming the woman as she is a victim of sexual assault, and has requested the media not publish her name.

Skibicki’s ex-wife was called as a Crown witness in the 37-year-old accused’s quadruple homicide trial in Manitoba’s Court of King’s Bench on Thursday.

The woman told the court she met Skibicki at a homeless shelter in Winnipeg in February 2018. She said she had just gotten out of jail and was struggling with a crystal meth addiction. Skibicki invited her back to his apartment, where she stayed for several weeks.

“It had its ups and downs. Sometimes things were not very good – abusive,” she told the court.

She said she was using meth regularly at that time, but never saw Skibicki use meth or take medication apart from marijuana. She said Skibicki asked her to marry him a few months after they met.

“Did you?” Crown prosecutor Chris Vanderhooft asked.

“I did,” she responded. “I felt stuck.”

She said their relationship was volatile and controlling. She told the court Skibicki liked when she would take medication that would help her sleep at night.

“When I would sleep, he would have sex with me,” she said, testifying sometimes she would wake up in the morning sore and bleeding, “He had a fetish for Sleeping Beauty syndrome, is what he called it.”

She told the court this would happen all the time, and when she tried to refuse the medication, Skibicki would get violent and force her to take it.

She testified Skibicki also had a sexual fetish to treat her like a rag doll.

“Kind of like limb and lifeless sexually,” she said, adding he would show her pornography that appeared to show a man having sex with a dead body.

“He said he liked it.”

During their marriage, she testified she started getting worried for her safety.

“I just started to get more protective of myself and setting up protection with my family and friends so that they always knew where I was,” she testified.

She told the court about several violent incidents – one of which left her with a concussion that has impaired her vision.

She told the court at one point Skibicki came at her with a butcher’s knife. Another time, she said he tried suffocating her with a pillow.

“He stopped for a second, and I said, ‘Go ahead, you can just do it. People know where I am, so you’re not going to get away with it,’” the woman testified. 

Accused threatened ex-wife on several occasions 

On several occasions, the woman said Skibicki would threaten her.

“He told me that if anything happened to me, that he would keep me in the closet,” she said, testifying that Skibicki told her he would defile her body after her death.

She told the court she was eventually able to get into an addictions treatment centre and shortly after filed a protection order against Skibicki, which was granted.

Under cross-examination by the defence, the woman said at the time she felt that Skibicki was schizophrenic, that he went between three different personalities, and that he believed he had been ordained by God.

Despite the protection order, the woman did eventually moved back in with Skibicki – who she says got her kicked out of her addictions recovery centre by interfering with her treatment. The court heard her mother helped her escape the relationship in March 2021.

“Did you ever go back to him again?” Vanderhooft asked.

“No, I did not,” she said, saying she felt Skibicki wouldn’t let her leave again if she ever went back.

Skibicki messaged ex-wife, saying he might go to prison for life

While she never saw Skibicki in person, the woman testified she had off-and-on communications with Skibicki through Facebook. Defence lawyers pointed to Facebook messages between the two in which Skibicki said he was being manipulated by Satan.

In her testimony, the woman recalled an eerie exchange of messages in May 2022 – around the same time the court heard Skibicki killed three of his four victims.

She said Skibicki messaged her, asking her to forgive him if he ended up going to prison for life. She said he told her he could end up doing three life sentences.

“I just had a bad feeling, so I ended up calling him,” she said. “I had a feeling that something terribly wrong had happened.”

She said Skibicki told her if he admitted what he did, they wouldn’t see each other again until they were in heaven.

“I ended up praying for him,” she said. “Because I knew that he had done something really bad. So I prayed that he would tell the truth. That whatever he had done, that he would come clean so that whatever had happened would have some closure.”

Days after that phone call, police arrested Skibicki for the death of Rebecca Contois. Her partial remains were found in residential garbage bins and in a city landfill.

Skibicki has admitted to killing Contois and three other women: Morgan Harris, Marcedes Myran, and a fourth unidentified woman Indigenous leaders have given the name Mashkode Bizhiki'ikwe or Buffalo Woman.

Skibicki has pleaded not guilty to four counts of first-degree murder. His defence is arguing he should be found not criminally responsible for the killings due to a mental disorder.

The Crown confirmed the woman and Skibicki are divorced.

The trial is set to continue on Friday.

There is a support line available for those impacted by missing and murdered Indigenous women, girls and LGBTQ2S+ people: 1-844-413-6649.

The Hope for Wellness Hotline for Indigenous people, with support in Cree, Ojibway and Inuktitut, is also available 24/7 in Canada at 1-855-242-3310.

Correction

Editor’s note: During the course of the trial, court evidence revealed clarification regarding the pronunciation of Jeremy Skibicki’s name. It is pronounced (phonetically) skih-BITS'-kee. CTV News will be using this pronunciation in ongoing coverage.

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