Notorious child abuser dies in prison after admitting to raping hundreds of young boys
A notorious pedophile, who admitted to raping over 200 children, has been found dead in his prison cell.
Karl Toft, who refused to apologize for his crimes despite once begging for forgiveness during an interview, was jailed for sexually assaulting young boys while he was a guard at the Kingsclear reform school in New Brunswick, Canada.
According to fellow inmate Charles Ingles, Toft was found dead in his cell after boasting that he had got away with raping an additional 200 children, following his sentencing for just 34 other charges.
Toft was sentenced to 13 years in prison after pleading guilty to 34 charges related to the sexual abuse of boys at the school near Fredericton.
He later admitted to assaulting 200 more boys over a 35-year period that he was never charged for.
Ingles says he knew Toft through a prison Christian group and said they often discussed religious scripture.
‘Tempted by children’
According to GlobalNewsCA, Ingles says Toft admitted that he remained tempted by children, but worked hard at avoiding places they might be in order not to re-offend.
“He would not go on public transportation.
He made sure that he bought a car as soon as he was out on his own.
“He would drive from one place to another because then he could avoid being around children,” said Ingles.
“He would go to Walmart, for instance, to do shopping at 10 or 11 at night so that there weren’t kids around.”
Toft said in an interview published in the Edmonton Sun in 2008 that a lot of his victims believed he had the power to keep them in the reformatory longer than their sentences.
He said that at six-foot-two and 245 pounds, he was a man his victims would not resist.
He said he started sexually abusing children when he was just 16 while he worked as a Boy Scout leader.
Toft told the paper he also got away with many of the sex assaults by befriending parents and their children.
“When it comes right down to it, I’m still ashamed of what I did. I’ve always been ashamed of what I did and to face that child today, even though he would be a grown adult, I would not know how to justify my actions. I would not know what to say to him, except, ‘Can you forgive me?”’ Toft said in the 2008 interview.
Suspicions of a coverup
Former Kingsclear residents claimed that the abuse was more widespread and involved other officials connected to the school.
An inquiry by the Commission for Public Complaints against the RCMP in 2007 cleared the force of allegations it covered up alleged criminal activities by Kingsclear staff, or by one of its own members, during its investigation of the school.
But it also concluded that sloppy investigative techniques, lack of supervision and poor documentation created the perception of a coverup.
It was widely believed that Toft may have had connections in high places that quashed investigations.
New Brunswick held an inquiry on Kingsclear in the mid-1990s.
Wil Tonowski, a retired Edmonton police officer who worked with high-risk offenders, knew Toft and remained in touch with him even after his retirement.
“We spent a lot of money doing surveillance on this man and he passed with flying colors in every single circumstance,” Tonowski said, recalling an event where Toft was observed in a supermarket and happened upon a young boy with a woman.
“He simply looked, stopped, froze, put the basket down and did an absolute about face, turned around the way he came and walked out.”
Wayne Land, a property manager who became friends with Toft through volunteer work helping offenders, said he met with Toft regularly over the years in Edmonton and visited him in prison just last week.
Land said he was skeptical when he met Toft of his claims that he’d accepted Christ, noting that he’s heard the same line from other convicts.
“Deliverance is deliverance, and his soul has been delivered,” Land said.
Police say they won’t be investigating his death and are not treating it as suspicious.