04-05-2013, 04:50 PM #1
Canada - Christine Jessop, 9, Queensville, Ont, 3 Oct 1984 - #3
BASIC OVERVIEW OF THE CASE:
Queensville, Ontario, Canada.
On October 3, 1984, at about 3:50 p.m., nine-year-old Christine Jessop got off her school bus, picked up her family's mail at the end of the driveway, and bounded into her home. She was likely excited about her new musical instrument – a plastic recorder – that her teacher had given her that day. No one was home. Her father, Bob Jessop, was serving time in a correctional facility and her mother, Janet, and brother, Kenny, were out running errands.
Sometime around 4:00 pm that same day, Christine strolled into a corner convenience store located about 700 meters from her home and bought a pack of bubble gum.
It was the last time she was seen alive, except by her killer.
When Janet and Kenny returned home at about 4:10 pm, they saw Christine’s book bag on the kitchen counter, as well as the mail and a newspaper she had brought in. Unable to find Christine, they called her friends and searched the neighbourhood and a nearby park.
Sometime between seven and eight o’clock, Janet Jessop called police and an enormous search for the missing girl began. She was not found that day, or in the days to follow.
On December 31, 1984 – three months later - human remains were found in a field 50 km east of Queensville near a town called Sunderland.
According to the Kaufman Report, “The remains were identified as those of Christine Jessop. Her body was on its back and decomposed. Her legs were spread apart in an unnatural position and her knees were spread outward. Animals appeared to have eaten at the legs. Her head was pointed north and her feet south. A sweater was pulled over her head. A few bones were scattered between her head and what remained of her legs, giving the appearance that her head and waist were not connected. The victim was wearing a beige turtleneck sweater, a blue pullover sweater, a blouse on which some buttons were missing and two pairs of socks. Her panties were found at her right foot. Blue corduroy pants with a belt and a pair of Nike running shoes were found just south of her feet. These clothes were subsequently identified as belonging to Christine. Her school recorder, with her name still taped on it, was found next to her body. The hand-knitted blue sweater with the zippered front and no collar, which she was last reported wearing, was not found on the body; nor was it ever located.”
An autopsy revealed that Christine had been killed by multiple stab wounds to the upper body. Semen was found on her underwear.
Christine’s neighbour – a young man named Guy Paul Morin was charged with her murder and was eventually convicted after two trials.
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Last edited by bessie; 02-26-2016 at 08:38 PM. Reason: added link to previous threads
04-05-2013, 04:55 PM #2
RESOURCES FOR RESEARCHERS:
“Redrum The Innocent” by Kirk Makin, 1st edition, 1992
“Redrum The Innocent” by Kirk Makin, revised edition, 1998
“Report of the Kaufman Commission on Proceedings Involving Guy Paul Morin” by the Honourable Fred Kaufman, C.M., Q.C., 1997 (This document is commonly referred to as The Kaufman Report.)
“Journey Into Darkness” by John Douglas and Mark Olshaker, 1997
“Manufacturing Guilt: Wrongful Convictions in Canada” by Barrie Anderson with Dawn Anderson, 1998
04-05-2013, 04:59 PM #3
The story hits Canada's national newspaper for the first time (see attached).
04-05-2013, 05:04 PM #4
An excellent, in-depth summary of the case can be found here (see attached). This is from “Manufacturing Guilt: Wrongful Convictions in Canada” by Barrie Anderson with Dawn Anderson, 1998
04-05-2013, 05:06 PM #5
The Queensville corner store as it appeared in 1984. The owner claimed that Christine came in around 4:00 pm and purchased some gum and then left.
04-05-2013, 05:11 PM #6
The corner store as it looks today. The area beyond the building with the green roof is the park. Christine lived north of the store on Leslie Street (north is left in the picture).
04-05-2013, 05:14 PM #7
Christine is found. The Globe and Mail - Wednesday, January 2, 1985.
04-05-2013, 05:16 PM #8
The lonely road. Looking east on Concession Road 4 towards the body site. The field where Christine was found is on the right (south side) quite close to the distant intersection.
04-05-2013, 05:19 PM #9
The body site photograph. Vehicles have been highlighted in red. Note the abandoned car in the grass. Police vehicles are parked on Concession Road 2. The red dot is the approximate location of where Christine was found - off the main tractor path and amongst the smaller cedar trees. Part of the Culls' trailer can be seen poking into the far left of the photo. (The property was owned by the Culls.)
04-05-2013, 05:20 PM #10
The Crime Scene
There are discrepancies between Makin and Kaufman regarding the body site. I’m going to arrange the information in a way that might allow for easier discussion and might initiate new readers who don’t have access to the materials.
Redrum will be referred to as RR. Kaufman Report as KR. Ellipsis (…) indicates and intentional omission of unnecessary words. I’ve arranged the information in a way that allows for a sequence and flow of ideas. First the setting, then the general location of the remains, then the description of the remains. I will do my best to indicate in bold facts that are contradictory or seem to be contradictory.
KR: A rutted tractor path leading into the field from the Fourth Concession, curved in a way which precluded anyone who was walking along the path from seeing what was on the other side of the bend. The area to the west of the tractor path, as one walked south from the Fourth Concession and leading up to a clearing in which a trailer was permanently parked, was grassy, lightly wooded, and interspersed with cedar trees and growth. As the Pattersons walked along the tractor path they spotted what initially appeared to them to be garbage approximately 25 feet from the west edge of the tractor path. The trailer, which had been put there by the owners of the property, was approximately 60 to 70 feet from the site of this ‘garbage.’ The Pattersons, who were neighbours, went to the trailer to see if anyone was there. It was unoccupied and it appeared someone had broken into it.
KR: To the west of this area, the woods became more dense and forest-like.
KR: Mr. Patterson and his daughters then walked along a trail in the grass towards the site of the ‘garbage.’ The grass adjacent to the beaten down pathway was approximately 1½ feet tall. As they came closer to the site, Mr. Patterson realized that they had come upon the remains of a child. Although he had walked along this property a number of times between October 3, 1984 and December 31, 1984, this was the first time he had noticed the remains.
RR: “The tiny corpse was in a sheltered area amongst a clump of trees – sort of like a vestibule cut out of the foliage. A white birch tree towered above it like a headstone and a thin wall of cedar bushes flanked it. Stalks of goldenrod … surrounded the remains. The forest floor in this spot was of a strange texture: wisps of grass and twigs lying across dark, bare earth. Although the grass was trampled down on the direct line that Patterson had taken to view the body, there were no discernible animal tracks on the soil”
RR: “A perfect little grotto amongst the trees and scrub bush…”
KR: The small clearing surrounding the remains of Christine Jessop…
KR: Her body was on its back and decomposed. Her legs were spread apart in an unnatural position and her knees were spread outward. Animals appeared to have eaten at the legs. Her head was pointed north and her feet south. A sweater was pulled over her head. A few bones were scattered between her head and what remained of her legs, giving the appearance that her head and waist were not connected. The victim was wearing a beige turtleneck sweater, a blue pullover sweater, a blouse on which some buttons were missing and two pairs of socks. Her panties were found at her right foot. Blue corduroy pants with a belt and a pair of Nike running shoes were found just south of her feet. These clothes were subsequently identified as belonging to Christine.
RR: “Only the lower half of the body was there. It appeared the upper portion of the body had been eaten, as only bones remained. I also noted that the legs of the child appeared to be abnormally spread apart and were bent at the knees.”
RR: “Her body was so lost to decomposition that it would be unlikely to yield many clues.”
RR: “It appeared the child was lying with her back facing up. Her legs were little more than bones covered with a mummified parchment of skin. An incongruous pair of white socks with blue trim still adhered to the end of each leg—the only clothing on the body.”
RR: “I then noticed a ball of clothing off to the side of the body … This clothing was of a blue colour. I also noticed a pair of panties lying on the ground near the right leg of the deceased. To the south of the deceased, I observed more blue clothing and what appeared to be a blue running shoe. I was unable to see any arms – or the head—of the deceased.”
KR: The hand-knitted blue sweater with the zippered front and no collar, which she was last reported wearing, was not found on the body; nor was it ever located.
RR: “The first item they found was the recorder in its tan pouch with a green drawstring, located barely off the tractor path.”
KR: Her school recorder, with her name still taped on it, was found next to her body.
RR: “Moments later, they turned up a pair of buttons…”
KR: During this search, they found two pearl buttons to the west edge of the laneway which were subsequently identified as coming from the blouse of Christine Jessop.
04-05-2013, 05:21 PM #11
Who was Christine Jessop?
Who was Christine Jessop?
Obviously, there is no substitute for actually knowing a person. Since that is impossible in the case of Christine Jessop, we must try to create a picture or portrait of a young girl from the facts provided in Kirk Makin’s Redrum: The Innocent and the Kaufman Report. I have made an attempt to assemble the relevant details from both sources and arrange them in a way that might give us a sense of who she was.
First, I shall let her mother, Janet Jessop, describe her. (This is verbatim from the Kaufman Report)
Q. Now Janet, at this Inquiry we've heard many details of Christine's death and the subsequent murder investigation, but we haven't heard anything about Christine's life. And I know that this is something that you've been wanting to tell at the Inquiry, and hopefully this will be your last time here. And I thought that this is your opportunity to tell the Inquiry at little bit about Christine herself.
J.J. Okay. She was a normal nine-year-old little girl. She was all of forty pounds soaking wet — excuse me. She really loved life. She loved her family, her uncles, her aunts and her cousins. She was a happy, sensitive, lively, caring and a little clean-freak girl. She had a terrific sense of humour. She was fun, she was feisty, and she loved to help in whatever you were doing, she just wanted to be with you. And she was a little going concern and a very loving child. She loved school and she loved sports, particularly baseball. And she adored animals and particularly her own dog, Freckles. And she was the little type, she could go from a real lady to a little tomboy. She'd put the worms on the hook for her brother because he couldn't put them on. And she even slept with the baby chicks so that they wouldn't be alone at night. And she was a very responsible little girl, she never wandered off from me for a minute. If she went to someone's home to play, or went to her grandparents for the weekend, she'd be phoning every five minutes just to say, hi. So that's the type of little girl that I lost due to some very, very foolish person, and very demented.
Q. And as Christine's mother, what kind of things did you and Christine do together?
J.J. Oh, we did a lot, we did everything together. We'd go to showers, shop, she and I were very, very close, and I guess maybe being the mother and daughter, you're closer to the daughter, the mother. We went to birthday parties, we went to parks, really the only time Christine was alone was when she was at school.
Q. And what were your expectations and dreams for Christine?
J.J. Well I think the first and most important thing was to remain the best of friends, which we were. And to see her graduate from school, to see her get married and have children and to remain a loving family and to let her pursue, rather, and achieve any goal in which she wanted to do, and this has all been taken away.
In Makin’s book, the author presents information that, at times, contrasts with the picture Janet Jessop created at inquiry. I have collected and assembled it here (and re-written it to some degree).
Christine Jessop was the biological offspring of Robert (Bob) Jessop and Janet Jessop. Her older, brother, Ken was adopted. She was a sickly child in the first years of her life and nearly died a few times due to gastroenteritis – a medical condition characterized by inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract involving both the stomach and the small intestines. This resulted in Christine suffering from vomiting, abdominal pain and severe cramps through her formative years. However, by the time she was seven or eight, the condition was easing. This medical issue may have resulted in her being a somewhat small and skinny child.
In October of 1984, Christine Jessop was nine years old, freckled and weighed only forty pounds. She had crooked teeth and a prize-winning smile. She may have had some trouble fitting in at school at times, and may have been occasionally picked on by other children due to her size. She was not excluded though. Christine had friends (Leslie Chipman, Amanda Halloran and Jennifer Coffey to name a few). She was described as being wilful and possessing a mind of her own, but she wasn’t the kind of child a parent needed to spank. Christine understood that “no” meant “no”. Still, she was no shrinking violet. Her mother described her as being a motor-mouth and talked with sass. At school, she was considered a chatty girl in the classroom.
Christine loved animals. She had a dog named “Freckles”, a pet frog named “Harold” in her basement, and fifty little chickens out in the back yard. When the chickens began to die of the cold, she and Ken slept outside with them to help keep them warm. When it got too cold, her brother retreated to the house, but Christine stayed all night. She was also friendly with her neighbour’s (the Morin’s) dogs, Jesse and James.
Christine was something of a tomboy. She wasn’t afraid to get her hands dirty and she was industrious. Christine caught and sold dew worms to cottagers passing by on Leslie Street during the summer. She was a Brownie, and played on the softball team her father coached. Apparently, she could throw a ball like a man and could use dirty words when talking about something she hated. She enjoyed time with her father and went with him to the fire hall on occasion.
Christine had a rough and tumble side, but she also had a girlish side as well. She liked to read, knit, play with her dolls and listen to Boy George songs on her phonograph. Her favourite song at the time of her disappearance was “I’m Going to Live Forever” – the theme song from the television show, “FAME”. Apparently, Christine would sing and dance to this music all the time. She was afraid of thunderstorms and would follow her mother around whenever they occurred.
At the time of her disappearance, Christine had reached a point in her life when she was becoming self-conscious about her looks - her boniness - her smallness - and that’s perhaps why she sometimes wore multiple layers of clothing – to bulk herself up. Christine was blossoming ahead of her time into adolescence –already wearing lipstick and makeup – and spoke of her ambitions to wear a brassier. In the park and in the schoolyard, she spoke about boys with an odd maturity.
Prior to the Jessop family’s arrival in Queensville, Christine, her brother, Ken, and two other boys (brothers – one Ken’s age, and one three years older) had been engaging in regular sexual activity for years. The boys had engaged in fellatio and sodomy when Ken was seven years old. Christine became involved in their activities starting when she was four. The three boys had engaged in everything up to and including sexual intercourse with her. Eventually Ken realized that they had been exploited by the eldest brother and that what they had been doing was wrong and warned Christine never to speak of it to anyone – and to never let anyone do that to her again. Apparently she had kept the secret and not told anyone. This information came to light only when Ken Jessop, crushed by tremendous guilt, confessed it to police in 1990.
Contrary to Janet Jessop’s description of her daughter’s habits, Christine apparently did travel alone around Queensville. She played in the park frequently during the summer months and sometimes stayed there quite late – walking home alone around nine or ten p,m. She was observed interacting with groups of boys in the park, and sometimes these boys were significantly older than her.
Christine also frequented the cemetery and played there often. She was drawn to one particular grave: that of a little boy. She often placed flowers there below the headstone.
Like all the other children at her school, Christine had been taught street-proofing skills, but her teachers, babysitter and even her father thought that she might be inclined to go with a stranger under the right circumstances.
04-05-2013, 05:22 PM #12
The Suspects List
SUSPECT: “UNCLE” HECTOR DRUMMOND (pseudonym)
From the Redrum: The Innocent:
(point form notes from pgs 48-49, some notes rearranged for clarity)
- A family friend - “Uncle” Hector Drummond visited the Jessop house three or four times a year often in the company of Janet’s father (Gordon Simpson)
- He was described as a “strange old coot”, “witty but cold and aloof” and “eccentric”
- Janet remembered her mother making a cryptic remark that suggested that Drummond liked to dress up in women’s clothing
- As a youth, Janet had stayed well clear of the “odd fellow”
- In recent years Janet found him less threatening and viewed him as sufficiently harmless and took to calling him “Uncle”
- At the time of Christine’s disappearance Drummond usually stuck around his old stone home in Durham Region and gathered antiques
- He was independently wealthy and a lifelong bachelor
- Owned a private hospital
- When Bob Jessop was cleaning out the garage/shed some time in the fall after Christine had disappeared, but before her body was discovered in Sunderland, he discovered a crumpled piece of paper that seemed to be a crudely drawn map to their home in Queensville
- The lines led eastward to Durham Region
- Showing the crude map to Janet, they concluded that the map terminated awfully close to the residence of “Uncle” Drummond
- Bob and Janet went on their own to Drummond’s house and (according to them) discovered a notepad lying on an end table
- They believed that the paper of the pad still held the impression of the map Bob had found in the garage
- Bob and Janet passed this information on to police
SUSPECTS: “AL and BILL MACK” (pseudonyms)
From the Redrum: The Innocent:
(point form notes from pgs 353-360, some notes rearranged for clarity)
- When the Jessops lived in Richmond Hill (prior to moving to Queensville), Ken was in dire need of friends
- He gravitated towards Al who was his age
- They began to experiment (sexually)
- The sex “games” accelerated when Al’s brother Bill came on the scene
- Bill was three and a half years older than Ken
- Ken and the two brothers engaged in regular sexual activity for years in Richmond Hill preceding Christine’s death
- Bill would use Al as an emissary to negotiate sex acts from Ken in exchange for him (Bill) playing road hockey with them
- Bill had “magazines”
- Bill instructed them that what they were doing was normal but to keep it a secret
- Christine became involved when she was approximately four years old
- Ken, Al, and Christine would engage in sex-acts together in a basement
- Ken, Christine and Al had been naïve, willing sex slaves for Bill
- Ken implied that the sexual activity stopped shortly before the Jessop’s moved to Queensville – a year before her abduction
- When Ken began getting sex education in school, he realized what they were doing was wrong
- Ken had a falling out with Bill and said he never wanted him to come visit them in Queensville
- Al visited the Jessops in Queensville several times
- Al also visited after Christine disappeared, including her funeral
- Al got “tipsy” at the reception after the funeral
- When police finally paid a visit to Al and Bill Mack in 1990 (after Ken confessed), both were established in middle-class lives and Bill was married
- Al initially downplayed the sexual activity but eventually admitted that fifteen episodes of sexual activity occurred in Queensville (Ken would adamantly deny this)
- According to Al, at least some of this activity took place behind the cemetery embankment
- Bill Mack was the only one of the group who had a driver’s licence in 1984 (the killer would need a car to take Christine’s body so far away)
- When interviewed by the police, Bill took a hard line and admitted almost nothing
- Bill claimed the Jessops were Al’s friends and that he rarely saw them
- He admitted to some sexual activity with Ken in a fort out in the fields (in Richmond Hill), but not with Christine and not with Al
- Bill said he didn’t have anything to do with Christine (sexually)
- Bill took a polygraph – the first test was inconclusive
- The second test he failed outright
- Bill remained adamant that he and Christine had not engaged in sexual activity
- Records confirmed that Al and Bill Mack had attended their school several kilometres away from Queensville the day Christine was abducted
- However, leaving school early or leaving at 3 pm dismissal would still allow them time to commit the abduction
SUSPECT: “BILL LAROCQUE” (pseudonym)
From the Redrum: The Innocent (First Edition):
(point form notes from pgs 807-810, some notes rearranged for clarity)
- in the 1993 (after GPM’s second trial) a retired social worker named Ben Jarvenpaa who had worked for Brock Family and Child Services in 1984, came forward to say that when Christine Jessop’s body had been found he had immediately contacted Durham police to tell them about a youth named Bill Larocque
- Bill Larocque – an unpleasant delinquent, had been placed in foster home a couple miles west along the Fourth Concession Road from the body site
- the foster home was a remote farm owned by a couple who regularly kept three or four foster children in their care
- Larocque was 16 years old at the time but had mature features and a beard
- Looked like someone in their 20’s
- Was a heavy smoker
- Could be charming or tough
- Was described by another social worker as very mature and glib
- Had the gift of the gab
- Was very badly battered as a child
- He used to say: “Someone stole my childhood”
- In the spring of 1984, while living at the foster home, Larocque had been expelled from high school for assaulting the principal
- After the expulsion, Larocque took to roaming the Sunderland area
- Jarvenpaa told police that he “knew all the roads and fields”
- Larocque and a friend were apprehended for breaking into a trailer located in the bush several miles away from the foster home (echoes of the Culls’ trailer being broken into?)
- Behaved in a smug manor when he pleaded guilty to the trailer break in
- Larocque’s foster parents became unnerved by his behaviour
- Another boy in the foster home told the foster parents that Larocque had stolen his hunting knife
- One night, his foster parents found him hiding naked in the room of another child in the home – a 12-year-old girl
- He had been having sex with her
- Larocque was immediately removed from the foster home
- Placed in a group home in Queensville
- This move to Queensville took place in the summer of 1984 – a few months before Christine disappeared
- All summer long, Larocque frequently returned to Sunderland area to hang out
- Makin surmises that Larocque probably knew of the body-site area
- Makin also surmises that he had “undoubtedly” seen Christine in Queensville
- When Jarvenpaa’s inquired to the police later on after his initial call, he was told that Laroque had been the main suspect in the investigation from January to March of 1985, but attention had shifted to GPM
- Police told Jarvenpaa that Larocque had an alibi and was dropped as a suspect
- The alibi was furnished by the group home in Queensville
- The group home supposedly had a log book that showed Larocque had been home when Christine was abducted
- Makin questions whether the log book was correct or not
- Makin speculates that the log book could easily have been altered
- Jarvenpaa had serious doubts about the murder investigation hinging on a log book
- After Morin’s first trial acquittal, Jarvenpaa contacted police again about Larocque’s viability as a suspect and was brushed off by police
- Jarvenpaa felt that police were too hasty to clear Larocque on the basis of the logbook entry
- The other social worker confirmed that the group home in Queensville was known in the business to be very “laid back” – a euphemism for the kind of place where rules were elastic and staff were indistinguishable from the youths
SUSPECT: “BRAD FOSTER” (pseudonym)
From the Redrum: The Innocent:
(point form notes from pgs 385-388, some notes rearranged for clarity, some notes here were implied but not directly stated by Kirk Makin)
- Foster was seventeen years old at the time of Christine’s disappearance
- an orphan who spent his childhood being bounced from one youth shelter to another
- had been a “mixed up” adolescent with problems related to his own identity and sexuality
- had no attachments to people
- people found his behaviour objectionable and disturbing
- Described as stoic and unemotional (implied)
- in 1983, he was caught engaging in sexual experimentation with young children at the group home where he was living
- this group home was located just a few kilometres from the Sunderland field where Christine’s body was found
- after his sexual abuse with the young children was discovered, Foster was banished to a more secure group home (location unknown) but didn’t stay for long and left for the east coast of Canada
- When he returned to Ontario from the east coast in 1984, a social worker took him under his wing and encouraged him to find work
- The job Foster obtained involved hauling car parts around in a van for a foreign-car sales and service outlet in New Market
- George Fejer, the owner of the dealership where Foster worked told police that on the day of Christine’s abduction, Foster had been assigned to deliver some car parts to Mississauga – a suburb of Toronto (95 minutes from New Market)
- Foster did not arrive back until between 7:00 pm and 8:00 pm that day
- Foster had been missing for most of the day on October 3 and no one had known where he was
- The owner had called the customer that day to see what was taking Foster so long
- When Foster finally showed up, Fejer confronted Foster about the missing time
- Foster told the owner he had gone to visit friends
- The owner found a gas receipt that showed that Foster had not been in Mississauga that day
- The day after Christine disappeared, Foster was noticed by the owner washing out the back of the van with a powerful detergent
- This was especially unusual because the van was never washed out because it wasn’t necessary
- Fejer said Foster even washed the seats and the dashboard
- Several weeks after the van-washing incident, Foster smashed up the van in a highway accident
- Foster had the van towed back to the dealership
- Foster hadn’t reported the accident
- Fejer called the police and arranged for them to drop in to make a report when he learned that Foster had not reported the accident
- Foster promptly disappeared after the phone call to the police
- The social worker who had helped Foster had felt that he (Foster) could have been a threat to him and his family and they were lucky to have escaped him
- The owner told police that he and Foster had often taken drives to find car parts in the areas between Queensville and the area where Christine’s body had been found (the implication being that Foster was familiar with the area)
- The owner told the police that Foster always carried a knife
- The van that Foster had been driving had been sitting outside with a broken window (its interior exposed to the elements) since the accident
- Police took the van and impounded it on January 31, 1985 – but by that time the investigation was focusing on GPM so no testing of the van was done
- The van sat in a police yard for many months and was never examined for evidence
- Police searched for Foster but could not find him
- Foster was eventually located living in Toronto by the Jessop investigators during GPM’s second trial
- At that point, Foster denied having killed Christine
- He said he only washed out the van to be a good employee
- Foster said he fled after the accident with the van because he had been driving without a licence
- When police went back to re-question the Fejers (the owner of the dealership), Mrs. Fejer recalled that in regards to the day Foster disappeared - the cheque for the car parts was dated October 2, which means it was the day before Christine’s abduction and that on October 3 – Foster must have been completing the task that he had failed to do the previous day (Oct. 2)
- (This makes for a fuzzy alibi at best – in my opinion. Was the cheque actually produced? And was the date correct?)
SUSPECT: MR. T
From the Kaufman Report:
The Chief of the Bradford Police Department, John Harrison, was concerned enough to contact Inspector Wilson suggesting that “Mr. T”3 be considered a serious suspect in relation to Christine Jessop’s disappearance. He was described as a young person with a criminal record involving sexual offences against young children, was known to carry a buck-knife, and had worked behind the Jessops' home in the cemetery — a location where Christine Jessop played regularly — as late as July 1984.
The whereabouts of Mr. T. were investigated by York Regional Police. He was quickly ‘cleared,’ apparently on the basis of information provided by family members who established an alibi for him. When, some years later, an attempt was made to verify this alibi, it was discovered to have been false.
The investigation of this lead was, in my view, less than adequate. I should note that this example is not intended to suggest, in any way, that Mr. T. was responsible for Christine Jessop’s disappearance. In my view, a number of individuals were inadequately cleared during the Durham Regional investigation as well — though they have undoubtedly been properly cleared by now. (Note: that is an assumption –my opinion.)
From the Redrum: The Innocent:
(point form notes from pgs 42-43)
- Mr. T – at the time of Christine’s abduction was not quite 16 years old
- Known to carry a knife and engage in deviant behaviour
- Police believed that he had tied up a woman
- Had exposed himself to two girls after threatening to put handcuffs on them
- Worked briefly as a grave-digger in the cemetery behind the Jessop’s house
- At the time of her disappearance he was on probation for sexually assaulting a ten-year old boy
- At the time of his first interview he seemed jumpy, behaved erratically, and was unsure of his whereabouts on October 3
- He later came up with an alibi that was supported by family members
- The alibi: he was with friends the morning of Oct. 3, at 2:30 pm he signed for a parcel at his sister’s house, then worked around the house with his brother until 4:00 pm, then picked up his father at the local Legion
- Police verified some aspects of this “alibi” – but never contacted the parcel delivery service or the Legion
(point form notes from pgs 42-43)
- Mr. T was known by those around him to have a violent temper
- Had once walked into his high school waving a gun
- Had assaulted a schoolmate
- Had threatened to kill a teacher
- A teacher had seized a knife from him at school
- Mr. T’s high school principal and vice principal considered him “capable of committing a violent murder” and was someone who took drugs and that he lacked genuine emotions
- When Durham officers visited him, he answered the door sporting a buck knife on his belt
- Agreed to take a polygraph but then retracted the offer (this is evidence of nothing – my opinion)
(point form notes from pgs 336-337)
- In 1989, a woman who worked with a friend of Mr. T’s sister contacted police with a tip:
- In essence the woman claimed that her friend told her that Mr. T’s family had lied about the alibi and that Mr. T. was unaccounted for and had taken the family car the day Christine disappeared
- Police interviewed the friend, and Mr. T’s sister, and both women denied that the tip was true
(point form notes from pgs 360-361)
- In 1990, Mr. T’s probation officer contacted police and volunteered information this information: that one month prior to Christine’s abduction, Mr. T. had taken a young boy to a secluded area and had forcibly fondled his private parts
- In early 1985 Mr. T had been convicted of indecent exposure
- In 1990, Mr. T could not remember his whereabouts on October 3
SUSPECT: “PHIL BRENNAN” (pseudonym)
From the Redrum: The Innocent (First Edition):
(point form notes from pgs 65-69 and 99-103, some notes rearranged for clarity)
- Phil Brennan was an unremarkable, 46-year-old man with little talent or social grace
- Moustachioed, six-foot tall
- Lived in a filthy, unkempt home only a few kilometres south of the Sunderland field where Christine would eventually be found
- Tattoo of an eagle on his arm
- Had already done a stretch in prison
- Described as a “ne’er-do-well”
- An alcoholic
- described as petty and consumed by absurd jealousies
- Constantly abused and berated his own children so they had little self-worth
- Had a domineering mother
- He gained sexual satisfaction from pain
- Had homosexual and group-sex experiences in his youth
- Admitted to being gang-raped as a child
- Once tied up his ex-wife “Trudy” and sexually assaulted her
- Was into kiddie porn and violent sex
- Was uncontrolled when drunk
- Was easily dominated by most adults, so he gravitated towards children but they found him repulsive
- Owned a knife
- Described as a nasty, slow-witted pervert with enormous libido
- Described by Makin as a hillbilly
- in November of 1984, “Trudy” (pseudonym) approached child-welfare services to tell them about her ex-husband, Phil Brennan, and his sexual molestation of their 5-year old daughter
- “Trudy” and her daughter left Brennan in September of 1984 (stressor?)
- “Trudy” felt that Brennan might be capable of abducting a child
- he had also molested his 8-year old daughter from a previous marriage 12-15 years prior but it was never reported
- Brennan had used a gun to extort sexual favours from a daughter of a previous marriage
- Durham Regional police were informed of the molestation by social services
- Brennan admitted to placing his penis near his daughter’s mouth but wouldn’t admit to anything further
- Durham police searched his house and found pornography
- The arrested him
- Durham police contacted York Regional police (they were in charge of the investigation into Christine’s disappearance at the time) and told them about Brennan because they felt he might be connected
- Police learned that Brennan was on his own during the time that Christine was taken
- He worked with heavy equipment at a construction job in Toronto
- Brennan would leave his construction job in Toronto around 3:00 pm and drive north through Queensville on a daily basis
- Brennan passed through Queensville around 4:00 pm most days
- After Brennan’s arrest by Durham police, he was granted bail
- Durham police were afraid that if he was involved in Christine’s disappearance, this close call with law enforcement might scare him into destroying any evidence he might have
- York Regional police discovered that Brennan had called in sick from September 25 until October 12 (1984)
- When York Regional police confronted Brenna about the Jessop case and asked him where he was on October 3, Brennan lied and said he was at work
- When police told him that they knew he had called in sick for the period in question, Brennan invented a story saying he was at home making preserves for winter (in other words – he had no alibi)
- After Christine’s body was found in Sunderland – Brennan was back on the police radar
- Durham Regional police obtained a warrant to search Brennan’s house south of the Sunderland body site from January 5-6, 1985
- Before the search happened, Brennan agreed to take a polygraph after it was suggested by police
- During the polygraph, Brennan was asked questions about his involvement in Christine’s abduction and murder
- He denied involvement
- Brennan passed the polygraph
- Because he passed the polygraph, the search warrant for his residence was never executed
- The investigation continued on and Brennan was no longer considered a suspect
- (Even though polygraphs were not, and are still not 100% reliable. Example – Bob Jessop who was in jail when Christine was abducted FAILED his polygraph. Was it a good move for Durham to discount this suspect on the basis of a passed polygraph? Gary Ridgway (The Green River Killer) took and passed a polygraph – then went right on killing prostitutes.)
04-05-2013, 05:24 PM #13
Another suspect emerges... information from Christine's brother
KJESSOP’s THEORY OF THE ABDUCTION (as sketched out by Dedpanman):
On October 3rd, 1984, Christine Jessop got off her school bus on Leslie Street at approximately 3:45/3:50 pm. She was most likely excited about her new acquisition – a plastic recorder (a whistle-like musical instrument) given to her that day by her school teacher. Christine picked up the mail and newspaper that had been left at the end of the driveway and went into her house. Once inside, she dropped the mail and her schoolbag. No one was home, as her brother Kenny and her mother, Janet, were out running errands. Shortly thereafter, Christine got onto her bicycle and rode south on Leslie Street to the corner store to get some gum.
Christine did not go to the park or intend to meet Leslie Chipman at the park because the two of them were not on friendly terms. Leslie Chipman’s claims that she and Christine had agreed to meet at the park with their Cabbage Patch dolls was, at best, a fabrication or a creative embellishment on her part. The fact that Christine’s doll was later found in her room at home indicates that she never intended to meet Leslie in the park. The doll was in Christine’s room the whole time and never left the house on October 3rd.
After purchasing some gum at the store, Christine rode her bicycle back to the house, at which point she encountered JP in a blue Oldsmobile waiting at the end of the Jessop driveway. Christine knew JP from the Co-op. She had encountered him many times. He was a friend of her father’s and he had sold them feed for her pet chickens which she kept in the backyard. Christine felt at ease with him. There was a certain amount of trust. After all, he was her father’s friend.
JP knew Christine’s father was in jail and he could clearly see by the empty driveway that Janet was probably not home. He likely asked Christine an innocent-sounding question to confirm that she was alone.
The opportunity he had been fantasizing about for some time had just presented itself.
JP spoke to Christine and likely told her that he intended to go visit her father at the detention center right then - and would she like to come with him? Christine leapt at the chance, but instead of getting into his vehicle immediately, she hurried into the house to get something, and in her hurry, she did not secure her bicycle properly in the back shed.
JP waited in his car for Christine at the end of the driveway, or, perhaps he drove up to the house. As he waited for her, his mind raced about what to say if Janet should arrive home at that instant. Just then, another school bus rumbled by heading north on Leslie street. On board, JP’s own stepdaughters glanced out the window and saw a blue car on the Jessop’s property. The car was also spotted by the bus driver – Mrs. Gibson.
Christine fetched her recorder from within the house to show her father and then got into the Oldsmobile with JP and they drove off together. Christine’s bicycle fell over on its own after they left, or it fell over during Christine’s hurried rush - her mind focused on soon seeing her dad. In her excitement, she did not think to leave a note for her mother.
As JP’s car pulled out onto Leslie Street, he headed north towards Ravenshoe Road. His mind was racing. He had done it - he had her – but now what? Where to take her? As he drove past his own house – he thought about his stepdaughters who would be home now, having just gotten off the bus. JP could not take her there.
He knew of many secluded places to the east where he could take her and do things and not be interrupted. The most direct route there: Ravenshoe Road.
As JP guided his Oldsmobile north, Christine would have become anxious as she knew this was not the way to go visit her father. He was located in a correctional facility to the south in Toronto. She knew the way. Something was not right.
Christine would have asked JP why they were going this way. JP probably would have attempted to lie - to allay her fears and maintain control of the situation. Depending on how good of a liar he was, Christine either accepted the explanation for the time being, or began to sense that she had made a big mistake getting into this man’s car and that she was in danger. Recent memories from school - of being warned not to get into cars with strangers may have begun to flitter through her mind.
As her anxiety increased, Christine probably asked JP to take her home – that she had changed her mind about going to see her dad. JP did not grant her request and kept driving, and at that point she knew she was in a bad situation. Christine may have demanded for him to stop the car and let her out right then and there. Again, JP did not do as she asked.
As JP’s car approached the intersection of Leslie Street and Ravenshoe Road it began to slow down to make the turn east, and at this point Christine may have attempted to open the car door and get out. JP had to control the car and control her at the same time.
At this point, an elderly couple at the same intersection witnessed this attempt by a man in a blue car to subdue a child in the front seat (Fifth Estate episode “Odd Man Out”).
In JP’s mind, panic was beginning to take hold. This wasn’t turning out like he had thought. The enormity of this situation suddenly overwhelmed him. She could never be allowed to go home. She could not be allowed to live and tell what he had done. And, it was still a long way to Sunderland.
Did he pull over to subdue her? A physical assault of some kind likely occurred. He struck her in the face...? Not necessarily. Autopsy revealed two blows to the upper part of her head (not to be confused with the massive facial injury). Or perhaps all of those injuries occurred at this point? Or, did he show her his knife and warn her about any further escape attempts?
At this point, Christine would have been completely overwhelmed with pain and completely subdued. She may not have been conscious. She was at his mercy.
JP continued east on Ravenshoe Road.
Around the same time (4:10 pm) Kenney and Janet Jessop arrived home and found Christine’s bike in a fallen state and the house empty.
04-05-2013, 05:25 PM #14
Gabriel Polgar's Experience
Gabriel Polgar's Experience
The bulk of this information comes from Redrum, but KJessop has alluded to the fact that the man Polgar saw on the Fourth Concession fit the description of JP. (Unless I got that wrong - and, my apologies if I did.)
Here it is. (From Redrum the Innocent by Kirk Makin)
In March of 1985, Global Television aired a re-enactment of Christine Jessop’s presumed movements leading up to her abduction. The show referenced a blue Oldsmobile that someone had seen outside the Jessop house on October 3.
When Gabriel Polgar saw the program – and the bit about the blue car - he was “jolted” into remembering an incident that had happened to him a few days after Christine’s abduction on the Fourth Concession.
Polgar lived on the Fourth Concession about a mile west of the body dump site. He said while driving that road, he saw a stationary car that was pulled off the road and halfway into the ditch. Polgar stopped to investigate.
There was no one in the car but the trunk was open a few inches. He heard someone in the bushes making noise – like they were kicking leaves. This went on for about half a minute, then a big man came out of the trees breathing heavily and was shocked to see Polgar at his car. The man went immediately to the trunk and closed it.
Polgar felt the man’s demeanour was threatening and then there was a kind of strange staring match between them. The man then got into his car and drove off.
Polgar said the spot where this encounter happened was a swampy, low-lying area west of where Christine’s body would eventually be found. (You can find this using Google Earth.)
Polgar gave the police a good description of the man but they didn’t seem very interested in his story. He also suggested to the police that the ground was pretty soft where this happened and that there was a good chance that the man’s footprints could still be found there.
Needless to say I suppose… the police never followed up on this lead.
When you compare the Gabriel Polgar story with the Robert Billings story, the Polgar one seems more authentic somehow. The geography is specific and Polgar seemed pretty confident that evidence of his story could be found and his encounter verified.
Makin sketches out the obvious implication of this story in his book: that Polgar may have interrupted the killer who was in the process of dumping Christine's body, and because of his intrusion – the killer decided to find another spot further east down the Fourth Concession (the Culls’ property).
But, then, what about the screams being heard at night...? Unrelated, or Christine was still alive during Polgar’s experience with the strange man?
04-05-2013, 05:26 PM #15
Who murdered Christine Jessop?
Who murdered Christine Jessop? With Guy Paul Morin cleared, police tackle a fresh probe
By Moira Welsh and Jim Rankin Toronto Star. 23 June 1995
In the months following the discovery of Christine Jessop's remains in 1984, police investigated more than 350 potential suspects. They latched on to one - Guy Paul Morin, the slain child's neighbor in the small town of Queensville.
Ten years later, Morin has been cleared. Time has taken away vital pieces of the puzzle that Metro homicide detectives now face in their fresh probe of the sex slaying. But they have a new tool - a sequence of DNA taken from semen on the girl's underwear.
These are the stories of some of the strongest suspects cleared by Durham police. Because a court order protects their identities, their names have been changed for this story.
It could have been a child's secret hideaway, the kind of place a little girl might hope to find exploring in the woods.
A tiny clearing scented with sweet cedar trees where she could lie in the grass and gaze at the blue sky. A quiet spot, shared with the raccoons who left their paw prints behind.
Death's imprint lingers instead.
They found Christine Jessop among these trees. She'd been missing three months. There was little left of the tiny, 40-pound, 9-year-old.
Her head had been cut off. It was wrapped in a sweater, placed near her body. Her knees were drawn up and her legs were splayed.
She had been stabbed repeatedly. Her semen-stained underwear had been sliced by a knife .
Little has changed at Christine's death site - a private lot off an old country road in Brock Township. The cedars have grown higher. The grass is a little thicker. But the mystery around her murder has grown deeper.
And a killer still holds the secrets of her final moments.
Christine wore those pigtails that stuck out of the sides of her head. The ones that girls hate when they grow older. During slo-pitch games she'd race around the bases, never sure where to go. But those pigtails were always bouncing.
At 16, Keith had the build of a football lineman - beefy, with a thick neck. He was a schoolyard bully who liked to carry a buck knife in a leather sheath on his hip.
Students and staff at the rural high school north of Queensville feared Keith. He had gone too far more than once. He'd even threatened to kill a couple of his teachers, staff told police.
On Feb. 13, 1985, two detectives put the question to Keith's principal and vice-principal: Did they think he was the type who would follow through on his threats?
The principal and the vice-principal didn't mince words. Keith was capable of violent murder, they told the detectives. He rarely showed any emotion. When he did, it seemed like an act.
He had already been charged with sexually assaulting a 10-year-old boy and had reportedly exposed himself to two young girls he had handcuffed together.
During the summer before Christine disappeared, Keith worked in Queensville, close to the Jessop home. The chances of encountering Christine or her adoptive brother Ken, who worked at the same place as Keith that summer, were great.
When police questioned Keith, he insisted he didn't know Christine or Ken. And he had an alibi for Oct. 3, 1984, the day Christine vanished, sometime after 4 p.m.
That afternoon, he helped his brother with work around the house. Around 4 p.m., Keith and his sister went to pick up their father from a nearby bar.
Keith's father and sister confirmed the story, as did the brother, who remembered Oct. 3 had been his day off work.
Keith's name was crossed off the suspect list.
But 10 years later and after the death of his father, his alibi appears to have weakened.
In 1989, Keith's sister told police that when she heard about Christine's disappearance - just a day after the girl went missing - she had wondered if her brother could had been involved.
Yet she had told police earlier that she knew exactly where Keith had been the day of the disappearance.
Police received a report in 1989 that Keith's sister had told a friend he hadn't gone to the bar with her.
As well, the alibi hinged on the fact that Oct. 3 was a day off for Keith's brother. Documents obtained by a private investigator indicate the brother had worked that day.
Keith is now living in a small apartment with his wife and baby. He has a respectable job.
He wouldn't answer reporters' questions on a recent visit to his home.
``How did you find me?'' he asked, standing behind a half- opened front door. A baby's cries in the apartment turned his head.
Asked if he would be willing to give police a blood sample for DNA testing, his answer was short and signalled the end of the interview.
``I'm not going to answer that.''
Lake Simcoe's waves were crashing into the boat but she stayed on the gunwale. The wind was wild. Water soaked her tiny frame. And she was laughing. Holding on hard and laughing.
It seemed like a complete waste of time.
Dale decided to clean out the grimy delivery van he used to transport auto parts. He used a powerful detergent to scrub clean the back of the van. When the scrubbing was done, he hosed away the dirt.
It was Oct. 4 or 6, 1984.
George Fejer, his boss and owner of a Newmarket company that made Lotus kit cars, remembered that incident. He thought it odd that Dale would be cleaning a van that would just end up getting dirty again.
A month later, Dale would crash the van and never show up for work again. His last pay cheque has never been cashed.
Dale was 18 then and had been in and out of a group home in the Sunderland area, not far from where Christine's body was found. He was reported to have ``sexually interfered'' with younger boys at the home.
A social worker from the home called police about a week after the body was found and said Dale may have been involved.
Dale was familiar with the Sunderland area and its dusty backroads. He often used them to make runs to a number of auto wreckers in the area.
He always carried a pocket knife.
Dale's whereabouts on the day Christine disappeared are unclear. His boss said Dale was supposed to pick up auto parts in Mississauga that day but came back late, without the parts.
Based on banking receipts, police believed the day Dale failed to pick up the parts was Oct. 2.
After the Nov. 26 accident, Dale had the van towed back to work. He did not report the accident to police.
Police seized the van and concluded there was not much chance Christine had been in it because she would have been covered in grease. Forensic tests revealed a spot of oil or grease on her turtleneck.
The grease on the turtleneck and the grease in the truck were never cross-checked for a match.
Dale was no longer considered a suspect.
Ten years later, any secrets Dale may have held have gone with him to the grave. He died last May of an AIDS-related illness.
In an interview several years after Christine's disappearance, Dale told an investigator he had cleaned the van because he had to climb in and out of it all day.
He scrubbed it down because he didn't like getting dirty.
She was born to parents who had given up hope of bearing a child of their own. She was a skinny baby who grew into a wiry girl. Her father, Bob, loved that. `` A long drink of water,'' he'd say.
Andy had his first sexual encounter with Christine when he was 13. His brother Peter was 10. Their buddy Ken Jessop was around 10.
Christine was 4.
By the time the Jessops moved from Richmond Hill to Queensville in 1983, Christine had - according to what Ken told police - been involved sexually with the three boys for four years.
They gave police conflicting stories of the extent of their sexual contact with Christine. But Ken, the Jessops' adopted son, told investigators that the three had been involved in intercourse and fellatio with his sister.
After the move, Ken said he took his little sister aside and told her that what had been going on was wrong and should be stopped.
Their secrets came out years after Christine's disappearance. They came to light only because Ken could keep them no longer.
Christine had said that she was ``going to tell,'' Ken told police in 1990, but he wasn't sure if his sister ever told anyone about the sex.
Andy was the ``aggressor'' and ``ran the show,'' according to Ken. The older brother liked to watch Ken and Christine ``do things together.''
The sex ended when the family moved to Queensville, Ken testified in court under oath, the only one of the three to do so.
After the move, Peter made a number of visits to the Jessop home before Christine's disappearance.
On the day of Christine's funeral, one of the brothers was at the Jessop home. It's never been clear if it was Andy or Peter. Later that night, the Jessops said they heard screams come from outside their home.
``God help me!''
In the courtroom, it was suggested the screams of remorse may have come from the neighbor being accused, Guy Paul Morin. Now that that explanation has been discredited, the source of the screams is an open question. No one could account for the whereabouts of Ken or the brother at the time.
Then came the dreams.
Ken said he began having troubling dreams that not all of Christine's remains had been recovered from the quiet clearing off Brock Township's Concession Road 4.
Ken had been to the site once before; with whom and when has never been clear. But he and his family went together on his second visit.
When they were about to leave - this was an area Durham investigators had scoured for evidence, digging up clumps of earth for testing - Ken spotted the bones.
He was right. Not all of his sister was in her grave. The small bones, one a finger bone, were from Christine's body.
On the day Christine disappeared, Ken had been to the dentist with his mother, Janet. Before that, the two had gone to Toronto to visit Bob Jessop, who was in jail on a commercial fraud conviction.
When they returned home sometime after 4 p.m., Christine wasn't there. Janet went to look for her daughter for about an hour. Ken was left alone.
Andy and Peter told police they were at school that day. If they had spent the entire day in class, they would have arrived home in Richmond Hill by bus between 3:30 p.m. and 4:10 p.m.
The school did not record early departures for the brothers that day. In fact, the school did not keep any records of early departures.
Andy now lives with his wife in a brick bungalow north of Metro. Peter rents a basement apartment in the same house.
A request for an interview with Andy has gone unanswered. And when Peter opened the door to his basement apartment on a recent visit and found two reporters standing there, he had little to say.
Peter stood in the door frame, one hand on the door, the other at his side, wearing a baseball cap backwards, wire-rimmed glasses, T-shirt and sweat pants.
He was asked if he'd like to talk about the Jessop case.
``I don't know anything about it, okay?'' he replied. He began to close the door.
One more question: Would he be willing to provide police with a blood sample? The door was almost shut. He looked at the reporters. The visit was over.
``No, that's okay,'' he said politely, and closed the door.
When a huddle of reporters put the same question to Ken Jessop on the steps outside Osgoode Hall on Jan. 23 - the day Guy Paul Morin walked out of court a free man - he had an answer.
``If they want to take a DNA sample on the front steps right now I'll give it to them.''
There was a grave of a little boy in the cemetery where she once played. His photograph was on the stone. She would sit at his gravesite and trim the grass with scissors from home. She felt close to him.
``I'm not well,'' came the raspy whisper from the old man in the maroon beret, sitting in an easy chair with a space heater at his feet. His hands shook with the tremors that come with age.
He did not like the fact that reporters had come to his home with questions about Christine's murder.
Clarence was the suspect police liked to call the ``iron lung man'' - a longtime friend of the Jessop family who had made some strange comments after Christine's remains were discovered.
Christine was ``better off dead'' because of something she had done in a past life, Clarence had said. ``She wasn't meant to live . . . she was just a body.''
Shortly after Christine disappeared, Bob Jessop found a map in his garage - drawn by Clarence and detailing the route from his home to the Jessop home.
Clarence was 70 then, and suffered from emphysema, a condition he claimed affected his memory.
Clarence had given no confirmable alibi. At the time, he had access to a car - one that matched descriptions of one that witnesses had seen at the Jessop home on the afternoon Christine disappeared.
The detectives dismissed him as a suspect. He appeared too frail to have committed such a grisly murder.
Freckles the beagle would lick her face goodnight. She'd crawl into bed, cuddling with her fuzzy pink blanket. It was called Blankey. She slept with it every night.
Ten years later, Clarence said he just wanted to put the whole thing behind him. And he wouldn't say if he would be willing to submit to a DNA test.
``I don't want to get into that,'' he said quietly. ``I think you should go now.''
The list of possible suspects is growing.
Suspicion has recently fallen on a man who lived above a Queensville store.
A private investigator said he has new information that an upstairs apartment was being rented by a man who had left his home over allegations of sexually abusing his children.
He kept a trailer behind the store.
One of the last places Christine was seen was at the store.
In another case, an elderly man who knew the Jessop family aroused suspicion years later when he apparently made a death-bed confession over Christine's murder.
An old man's guilt. Or a misinterpretation by his nurse.
The truth went to his grave.
One day she came home from school very quiet. A bully had been picking on another child. She hated that. She hated to see anyone cry. In her secret world, no one ever got hurt.
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