Common thread in two missing women cases raises questions
It’s one step forward and two steps back for those close to the cases of two London women who disappeared years apart in what were once believed to be separate cases.
“Now it seems like one step backwards when you find out that somebody with some information has now died and we don’t have that information any more,” said Jennifer Dunn, the executive director of the London Abused Women’s Centre.
On Monday, London police said the cases of Kathryn Bordato, who was last seen in July 2009, and Shelley Desroschers, who was last seen in January 2016, remain open. They also said that during their investigations they found a person who was known to both women.
Police have not formally connected the two cases but officials added, "this individual provided very limited cooperation with investigators and there was evidence to indicate that this person withheld information from police.”
Dunn wonders what might have happened if the public had been made aware of the person much earlier.
"It’s not surprising that these two women could have been known to one individual by any means. But it’s definitely important to listen to that call for police supports that the police were mentioning. And so, even the smallest amount of information could be helpful."
A criminologist at Western University, Michael Arntfield points out that while a person of interest is not a suspect, a common thread in the two women’s cases suggests the possibility of a serial offender.
“By confirming now that there’s a common denominator between both of these cases and they’re now being discussed as a set -- this is a significant step foward in recognizing that you possibly had -- again we don’t know the level of the person’s involvement -- but you possibly have a serial offender.”
Dunn, meanwhile, said she hopes the newly revealed information generates more tips from the public. She also said the revelation is timely, given that November marks the Shine a Light on Woman Abuse campaign.
“You know we don’t know where they are and what has happened to them, and the families need closure.”