Toronto, Canada has been rocked by the news that an alleged serial killer seems to have been at work within the city for a number of years. Bruce McArthur has been hit with a total of five charges of first-degree murder, but police warn that there may be more charges and bodies coming. We have all of the latest on McArthur, the evidence currently against him, and the possible future of the investigation.
Gay Men Disappearing From “The Village”
The intersection of Church and Wellesley is the heart of the gay community in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, known locally as “The Village.” Late last year, a disturbing trend was starting to frighten many of the locals. Men were going missing.
According to locals, the missing men’s disappearances were under-investigated by police. Members of Toronto’s gay community were told time and again the missing men were not connected and a serial killer was not at work in the Toronto area.
Whether it was mounting community pressure on Toronto police or evidence finally leading to connections, on January 18, 2018, Toronto police arrested a suspect in the 2017 disappearances of Andrew Kinsman and Selim Esen: 66-year-old Bruce McArthur. McArthur was charged with murder in both cases.
With McArthur behind bars, police continued to search properties he was connected to. And what they discovered has chilling implications.
More Bodies Found, but Are There More to Come?
Upon his arrest, Toronto police began searching properties that McArthur, a self-employed landscaper, had been known to deal with, including his own properties and client properties. What officers have discovered so far is chilling, to say the least.
On January 29, 2018, investigators announced that they had found dismembered remains of at least three people in the bottoms of large planters on a property McArthur has used as storage for his landscaping business. The police say the remains have yet to be identified.
Police also announced that three more charges of first-degree murder had been added to McArthur’s docket, naming missing men Majeed Kayhan, Soroush Marmudi, and Dean Lisowick as the victims.
The evidence has suggested to police that there may be more remains to be discovered. Kinsman, Esen, Kayhan, and Marmudi all had close ties to the gay community within The Village. It is currently unknown if Lisowick also frequented the area. It has been reported that he was a frequent user of the shelter system within Toronto and as such was never reported as missing.
Currently, Kayhan is the oldest of the known murders, as he went missing in 2012.
That being said, these men are not the only ones to vanish from The Village area without a trace. Skandaraj Navaratnam and Abdulbasir Faizi both went missing in late 2010. In many ways, these two missing men have a similar social and physical profile to McArthur’s purported victims. Are these disappearances connected? Police have yet to confirm or deny any connection between them.
Police have been searching properties across the Toronto region and in the small town of Madoc, approximately two hours west of Toronto. McArthur is known to have used property in that region.
A History of Violence
Bruce McArthur was not unknown to police or the gay community of The Village. Fifteen years ago, McArthur was barred from The Village area after he was convicted of assault with a weapon and assault causing bodily harm for an incident where he attacked a man with a metal pipe. As part of his conviction, McArthur was ordered to stay away from 484 Church St., a co-op apartment building complex near Church and Wellesley.
McArthur appeared in court on Monday morning. With the additional charges made, he is set to next appear on February 14, 2018. There is a strong possibility that the charges will have to be updated again by that point.