Serial killer vividly described murder
Oct 29, 2012 / 7:36 pm
A convicted serial killer who methodically strangled a fellow inmate to death in their shared cell has placed blame on the federal corrections system for transferring him out of a higher-security prison.
During a police interview played at a coroner's inquest Monday, Michael McGray, 45, described in vivid detail how he planned and then killed 33-year-old Jeremy Phillips in an Agassiz, prison in November 2010 as part of a fake hostage-taking scenario.
"I don't know why they made the mistake of putting me here. I'm not a 'medium' inmate," McGray told a pair of homicide investigators the day after the crime.
"We didn't have a beef ... This was all about me, it wasn't about him."
McGray was a six-time convicted serial killer from Eastern Canada who initially was held in a super-maximum security prison in Quebec. He was later transferred to the Kent high-security prison in British Columbia, and then just before the murder, was moved to Mountain Institution, which is classified as medium-security.
The inquest was called because BC's chief coroner wanted the "issues raised surrounding the safety of inmates in the prison system" to be explored.
The jury of three men and two women is tasked with making recommendations to prevent similar deaths in the future.
McGray pleaded guilty to first-degree murder a year after he killed Phillips and was given another life sentence. Phillips had been serving time for aggravated assault.
In the interview, McGray expressed resignation to the homicide investigators, noting he hadn't killed anyone in years.
"It's a mental health issue," he said. "I had a hiatus for 15 years and I just couldn't hold back any more."
McGray went on to eagerly outline the steps he took to gain the trust of his new, junior cellmate as though he were telling a story.
"I'm a sociopath, I'm a serial killer," said the large, muscular man, repeatedly telling the officers it's only a matter of time until he kills again.
"I've never been offered any help," he added. "I've never been able to address it, it's an endless, vicious cycle."
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