ARTHUR GARY BISHOP
"I'd Do It Again"
The morning after his confession, Bishop led police to the remains of his victims, three sets of skeletal remains near Cedar Fort, and two more recent corpses near Big Cottonwood Creek. He was ambiguous about the motive for his murders, first claiming that he killed only those molestation victims who threatened to report him, later admitting the thrill he derived from murder itself. In either case, the crimes were compulsive. "I'm glad they caught me," Bishop said, "because I'd do it again."
After the public announcement of Bishop's arrest and confession, police were swamped with calls from parents who accused Bishop of molesting their children, or the children of acquaintances, over the past decade. None had taken that step while Bishop was still at large, still hunting, and authorities were confounded by their long silence. "What I'd like to know," Detective Captain Jon Pollei told the Salt Lake Tribune, "is where were those people two and three years ago, when we had nothing."
A search of Bishop's latest residence provided evidence to substantiate his confession. Police retrieved a .38-caliber revolver, a bloodstained mallet and hammer, plus dozens of photos depicting nude boys. Many of the photos were framed to exclude faces, making identification impossible, but they provided mute testimony to Bishop's long career of child molestation. A book recovered from his home, titled 100 Ways to Disappear and Live Free, told investigators that Bishop had studied for his role as a fugitive from justice.
Arthur Bishop was charged with five counts of capital murder, five counts of kidnapping, two counts of forcible sexual assault, and one count of sexually abusing a minor. The latter charges applied only to his most recent victims, in cases where forensic evidence of sexual assault was still availableand murder was the count that really mattered. If the state could prove its case, that charge would send him to his death.
Deputy County Attorney Robert Stott described Bishop, in an interview with the Salt Lake Tribune, as a ruthless killer and sexual deviant possessed of "a scheming, calculating, cunning mind." Bishop, meanwhile, in his statements to police, made the crimes sound terribly simple. As Detective Bell later recalled, quoted in the Deseret News, Bishop told him, "You can offer [children] anything and they'll go with you."
That lesson was not lost on Bishop's younger brother, apparently. Arthur was still awaiting trial in Salt Lake City when he learned that sibling Douglas had been jailed for sexually abusing young boys around Provo, in Utah County, south of Salt Lake City. The crimes were apparently unrelated, with nothing to suggest that the brothers had ever shared victims, but the news still prompted speculation about their backgrounds and the source of their criminal urges.
Arthur Bishop, for one, wasn't talking.
He was getting ready for the trial that would decide his fate.