Francine Da Sylva- Glass of Fashion / WKT3 #6


[Cold opening]

[Cocteau Twins / Donimo]

[This Mortal Coil]

On Friday  Oct 18, 1985 Francine Da Sylva was out  with a close friend,  Johanne Page in the Plateau neighborhood of Montreal.  The two women worked at a sushi bar on St. Laurent.  They went to a club, later around 4 am they found themselves at a 24-hour dinner on St. Denis and Mount Royal. They walked home together down St. Denis and when they got to Duluth St.,  where Joanne lived,  she asked Francine if she wanted to stay over, which she often did.  Francine decided against it and headed home.  Down St. Denis to Sherbrooke, then east along Sherbrooke to St. Andre where she lived.

The event would have happened between Duluth and St. Andre. At the corner of Sherbrooke and St. Andre there is a back alley to the parking lot behind the apartments on Sherbrooke.  Francine was either dragged down the alley, or abducted in an automobile and driven there.  Later that morning two nursing students who lived in the back apartments found Francine’s body in the alley behind 902 Sherbrooke street east.  She had been stabbed and raped. Her roommate Carol notes that Francine was 4 days away from her 30th birthday. Also that the Montreal police were on strike at that time, so they probably didn’t work that weekend.

Eventually police did manage to investigate. They found Francine’s bus pass with her old address on it. They went to the apartment on Erables, at this point Carol’s boyfriend was now living in it.  The boyfriend called Carol to say the police were looking for Francine.

Carol was listening to the radio when she heard the news that a woman had been stabbed in the Plateau. Later that afternoon two policemen showed up at Carol and Francine’s apartment. They asked if Francine lived here. At this point Carol says everything became a blur. They said they found a body stabbed, then asked Carol what Francine was wearing the last time she saw her.  They asked if Francine had red boots? She did have red boots, her pride and joy. When police went upstairs to Francine’s room they found the boots missing, along with her favorite outfit.  

Police asked Carol to identify the body.  Carol was in shock. They asked about family members. Her older brother Gerald lived in Montreal.  They asked about Johanne Page. Police quickly left to interview Gerald and Johanne. They would not allow Carol to give them advanced warning. Carol felt like she had thrown them both under the bus.  She wouldn’t hear from police again until 2001, when she began to investigate her friend’s cold case.

In 2001 she called the Montreal police and asked about any information about Francine’s case. Carol was thinking about new advances in forensic science.  Eventually Carol and her aunt managed to meet with a sympathetic Montreal detective named Michael Hanington.

Hanington was very interested in the case of Francine Da Sylva. He found lost DNA samples. Hanington was overjoyed, the samples had been misfiled for years.  Hanington told Carol  Francine was found  naked and had her jumper and jacket thrown over her. She had been anally raped as well. He said she been stabbed multiple times, but that this was holdback information, the press were told she was stabbed once.

In a bizarre twist, they found a potential link between Francine’s case and the murder of a prominent Montreal criminal lawyer. A note in Francine’s file from a respected informant  from the era suggested the October 15th,  1985  shooting of Frank Shoofey was related.  Francine was murdered just three days later.  Shoofey was gunned down in his law office late at night one block north of where Francine was found.


At the time of her death, Francine was a student at the University of Montreal. She had just begun dating Dominique Lanois , the lead guitarist for an up and coming Quebec band named Bundock.  Francine like the rock n roll guys. For a time she was going out with Gordon Page, a lighting tech who sometimes traveled on tour with April Wine. Francine found it difficult, the roadie tales of  sex, drugs and rock and roll. She decided to break up with him.  When she left Gordon it was then that she decided to move in with Carol in the apartment on St. Andre street.  Two single women in the heart of Montreal.  Sometimes they’d go to the Zodiac bar in the nearby Voyageur bus station, they’d try every cocktail on the menu. They went to the Old Munich – once.  They didn’t notice the neighborhood was rough, but after Francine’s death police told them that prostitutes would use the alley where Francine was found.  Carol says that maybe if she’d never left Gordon Page and moved into her apartment Francine would still be alive today.

[Beach Boys, I’ll Bet He’s Nice / The orgins of Dream Pop]

They were all into Herman Hesse, Tolkien, Jung – they read John Fowles, The Magus.  The choice of what gift to give was of utmost importance. They would figure what to give, and of course share albums and books. They were obsessed with The Cocteau Twins…

[Bundock / Le Corbeau /Where Pop was going]

Francine was very French when Carol first met her she didn’t speak English, but she learned it fast. When she decided to return to University to study linguistics, she became fascinated with Japanese and began studying it. She had started to write a book. Her brother Gerald made handmade guitars and was an excellent musician. Francine and Gerald were very close.

[Cocteau Twins / Otterley]

After Carol contacted me, we began to do what I would call my usual process of trolling for more information.

A small notice the November 1, 1985 Montreal Gazette mentions the coroner’s inquest into Da Silva murder had been delayed.  Coroner Roch Heroux postponed things at the request of the defense attorney representing Raymond Charette, a 27-year-old man being detained as a material witness.

On November 7, 1985 The Gazette reports that Heroux freed Charette due to insufficient evidence but he was later re-arrested by Montreal police moments before leaving the Parthenais detention facility when it was discovered he was responsible for an alleged attack on another woman on the same night.

From this, we made a formal request to Canada Corrections for any parole records on Raymond Charette. We came up empty, which could mean a lot of things; Charette was never there, he was never convicted of a murder, he was there but died in prison a long time ago.

Carol managed to obtain Francine’s Coroner’s report. Again, there wasn’t much information, however it was confirmed that Francine lived at 1559 St-Andre, that her body was found at 8 am the morning of October 18, 1985 in an alley behind 910 rue Sherbrooke Est. at the bottom of a staircase.  Francine died of internal hemorrhaging to the heart and lungs.  She was stabbed in the thorax and other areas.

From here, I traveled to Montreal and reviewed the Allo Police archives at the Biblioteque National de Quebec ( BAnQ ). I found two articles on Francine, the first dated November 3rd, 1985.  Confirmed was that two nurses discovered the body at the foot of the back apartment stairs.  She was wearing the red boots and a chain around her neck. Her clothing was disbursed an the stairs.  The case was managed by Andre Charette,  Andre Bisson, Andre Savard, and Jean-Louis Helie. The detectives had the same thinking that there were two versions of what could have happened to Francine; she was abducted in a car then dumped, or she was dragged into the alley way.

The second Allo Police article, written by Jean-Pierre Rancourt, focuses on the suspect, Raymond Charette.  We learn that 28-year-old Charette – and it is interesting to note he shares the same last name as one of the investigating officers, Andre Charette – is a resident of Rosement and detained for over a week by Coroner Heroux until November 6th..  Upon his arrest his clothing had clear evidence of blood on it.   The second victim of an attack on the same day that Francine was murdered tells police she was waiting for a bus on rue Mont-Royal when she was forced into a vehicle by a man with a knife, alleged to have been Charette.  The second victim is unwilling to tell police the exact nature of her assault, but she manages to reveal that she drove with him around The Plateau engaging in conversation to try and calm him down.  Charette eventually lets her out of the vehicle.

After Charette was picked up, at the advice of his attorney, he refused to take a polygraph, or to provide a blood sample. Police scan the trash cans in the alley where Da Sylva was found looking for the knife that killed her, but they are unable to find anything.

Eventually Charette is let go, Francine Da Sylva is forgotten, and the matter is never heard of again.

[Cocteau Twins / Ribbed and Veined]

Now, if you’re thinking this case sounds familiar, it should. I was having coffee with a colleague in Montreal and mentioned I was working on a case about a murder that occurred on rue St-Andre. They said, “Ah, the Nicole Gaudreault case!”. I said, “No, there was another!”

Recall the case:

Gaudreaux was found naked, on her back, her face bloodied. She was beaten badly about the head, and raped. Police found a large amount of blood on the stairs of 2036 rue Saint Andre, it was assumed she was attacked at this location and her body was later dragged to the field. Her empty purse was recovered a few feet away from the body.

The cause of death was “Manual strangulation”, “cerebral contusions”, a “skull fracture”, and “cerebral hemorrhaging” which accounts for the blood on the stairs.

Gaudreault was wearing blue stockings, a pink blouse (pulled up over her head),  and a beige bra (detached).

Found by the stairs of 2026 Saint Andre were her black pants, red shoes, and her purse which contained a dental prothesis. It was thought Gaudreault either lived at 2030  St-Andre, or that was her intended destination. “

So, back to BAnQ… More searching through archives:

Gaudreault was from Chicoutimi. We don’t know what she was doing in Montreal, or even if she lived at 2030 St-Andre. What we know is her murder occurred 6 years earlier, and half-way between where Francine Da Sylva lived at 1559 St-Andre and where she died behind 910 Sherbrooke est.

She’s found in the alley way, behind a huge rock that would have blocked access to vehicles. Before she died Gaudreault spent the evening at a bar called Baltimore at the corner of Saint-Hubert and Ontario, this is just up the street toward where Da Sylva was found. Police have two theories. In the first scenario Gaudreault leaves Baltimore in the company of a man. They plan to go back to her apartment. Before arriving at the door the man makes inappropriate advances, and starts to rape her. Things escalate. She’s dumped in the back alley. In the second scenario Gaudreault leaves the Baltimore bar alone and is accosted along the way by a “pervert”.

[Cocteau Twins / Great Spangled…]

The anonymous phone call

When I originally reported this story I mentioned that police received an anonymous phone call. Because of the vagueness of the source article, I always took this to mean a pedestrian discovered the body and called it in to police.

Not so.

The Allo Police article goes into greater detail. The caller states, “J’viens de tuer une femme. Vous la trouverez dans le terrain vacant de la rue Saint-Andre…” / “I just kill a woman. You’ll find it in the vacant lot of rue Saint-Andre … “.

So, the killer made the anonymous call. Where have we heard that before? In the case of Katherine Hawkes.

Recall that Hawkes was discovered near a commuter rail station in the Montreal area of Cartierville on September 21, 1977. Hawkes too was beaten violently about the head and raped, her clothing found near the body.

The caller’s first message (he actually called the police twice) was as follows:

“I attacked a woman at the corner of Bois Franc and Henri Bourassa. In the bushes to the North West side. Hurry sir, I’m afraid she might die. Thank you.”

Is it possible that these three cases from 1977, 1979 and 1985 are linked? I don’t know. I don’t think we will ever know.

Even further is it possible the beating death of Lison Blais, also found in a back alley area in the Plateau in 1978 is also linked?

We will never know.

[first Outro – The Nexus (Auberge / Archenbaut / SPM / BAnQ) / Pink Orange…]

Photo I snapped, unknowing that Francine and Carol’s apartment was in background.

1559 St Andre at de Maisonneuve
2026 St Andre where Nicole Gaudreault was beaten
2030 ST. Andre where Gaudreault was maybe headed

Alley where Nicole Gaudreault was found behind St Andre

Alley where Nicole Gaudreault was found behind St Andre

Alley where Da Sylva was found / St. Andre and Sherbrooke
Francine Da Sylva was found at the base of the stairs

Francine Da Sylva was found at the base of the stairs

Corner of St. Hubert and Ontario / where Gaudreault was last seen at the Baltimore bar
Da Sylva Alley at night (I doubt that light was there in 1985)
2026 / 2030 St Andre at night / N Gaudreault

[Lush -Spooky / The evolution of Dream Pop]

[2nd Outro – if you like the podcast…]

[Ian McCulloch / Candleland / where Dream Pop landed]

Music from the podcast: Increasingly I enjoy using the podcast as an opportunity to explore some album or sub-genre of music that is unfamiliar to me.

For this podcast, Carol told me she and Francine loved The Cocteau Twins, so this opened the door into the atmospheric realm of “Dream Pop” .

Dream Pop was a form of alternative rock from the 80s with lots of textures and lazy-hazy melodies. The Cocteau Twins are one of the best examples of Dream Pop.

The Cocteaus were a Scottish rock band formed by Elizabeth Fraser(vocals), Robin Guthrie (guitars, drum machine), and Will Heggie (bass), with Heggie replaced by multi-instrumentalist Simon Raymonde in 1983. The podcast opens with the Cocteau Twins’ Donimo, a song Francine would have known. It quickly moves into This Mortal Coil, a music collective formed in 1983 that included members of The Cocteau Twins. The reference to Shakespeare’s Hamlet is deliberate on my part, as the episode touches on a sub-theme of illusion, repetition and madness.

The Beach Boys, I’ll Bet He’s Nice? A few reasons; the boy-girl dating thing and break-ups, It’s from 1977 so it ties back to the murders from the 70s, but primarily because Brian Wilson is considered one of the grandfathers of Dream Pop. So too is George Harrison, especially the album All Things Must Pass (Theresa was a big fan of both). And this is why bits of Harrison’s Blue Jay Way can be heard in the opening.

Le Corbeau – Bundock? Well, Francine was dating the guitarist, and it’s a good representation of Quebec Dream Pop.

From this point, the remaining three Cocteau Twins songs were all released in November 1985, the month after she died. I deliberately left out a later song of theirs called Alice, which most people know from the film The Lovely Bones.

Lush – Spooky – Tiny Smiles: I’ve always liked this song, and have wanted to include it in some podcast. It was only in doing this project that I would learn it was produced by… Robin Guthrie of The Cocteau Twins.

Ian McCulloch – Candleland? Well because that’s actually what I was listening to in the 1980s. I never realized that is Elizabeth Frazier on background vocals.



Never a good month for me. A cruel month.

I was contacted this week by the Journal de Montreal. They wanted to do some, “40th anniversary of Theresa’s body being discovered” piece.

I’m not interested. I’m not interested in working with that particular Quebec rag (we will get to them, patience…). I am particularly not interested in another “anniversary” piece.

Ding-Dong… the clock strikes 40 bells. The horror. The shame. So glad that the rest of the population doesn’t have to suffer what that family went through.

Never again.

If you want to help? Stop grieving for Theresa. It’s past.

Start helping other families. Families that still need our help, and we can help: Marilyn Bergeron, Ariel Jeffrey Kouakou, Riley Fairholm, Cedrika Provencher…


Music – Who Killed Theresa? The Podcast

A listing of all music referenced on Who Killed Theresa? The Podcast

It’s No Game – WKT #24

It’s No Game – David Bowie

The 1971 Unsolved Murder of Alice Pare / WKT #25

Indoor Fireworks – Elvis Costello

The Game – Echo and the Bunnymen

The Ballad of William Fyfe / WKT #26

Evil Grows – The Poppy Family

Seasons in the Sun – Terry Jacks

Theresa Allore: You Think You Know This Case? WKT #27

Love is Like Oxygen – Sweet

Healer – Sweet

The avoidable lessons of Cédrika Provencher / WKT #29

All music from the video game, Off: Alias Conrad Coldwood / Mortis Ghost – Original Soundtrack

Literature & Criminology – The Second Michael Arntfield Interview – WKT #30

Up from the Skies – Rikki Lee Jones

Still Rainin, Still Dreamin – Jimi Hendrix

Victimology – A Canadian Perspective WKT #31

No Evil – Television

I Do The Rock – Tim Curry

Tales from Hollyweird – WKT #32

Naima – Eric Dolphy

Easy Swing – Wardell Grey

Perfidia Cha Cha – Cal Tjader

Native Land – Curtis Amy & Dupree Bolton

Polka Dots – John Coltrane

Lullaby of the Leaves – Billy Bauer

Solo Flight – Charlie Christian

Could it be Magic – Barry Manilow

Follow-up / WKT #33

How Dare You – 10cc

Lazy Ways – 10cc

The Worst Band in the World – 10cc

I’m Mandy, Fly Me – 10cc

Life Is a Minestrone – 10cc

Art for Arts Sake – 10cc

Blackmail – 10cc

UnHappy Ending – WKT #34

Eldorado Overture – Electric Light Orchestra (ELO)

Mister Kingdom – ELO

Eldorado – ELO

A Wolf in the Fold WKT #35

Fantasy Satisfier – Spooky Tooth

A Wolf in the Fold Part II WKT #36

Women and Gold – Spooky Tooth

The Mirror – Spooky Tooth

Female Jogger Attacked – WKT #37

Anything at all – CSN

Sex Beast: Stuart Peacock / WKT #38

No Second Chance – Charlie

The Pouliot Shotgun Murders – WKT #39

Let There Be Rock – ACDC

Confusion Now Hath Made His Masterpiece – WKT #40

In Through The Out Door – Led Zeppelin

We Found Stewart Peacock – WKT #41

Tales from Mystery and Imagination – Alan Parsons Project

What’s Past Is Prologue – WKT #42

Stay A While – The Bells

Stay Vigilant – WKT #43

The Jam

The Stéphane Luce Interview – WKT #44

Pink Floyd

Abandon Hope All Who Enter Here / WKT #45

All Things Must Pass – George Harrison

Beware of Darkness – George Harrison

Who Killed Theresa? WKT2 #1

l’affaire Dumoutier – The Box

Hands With Slaughter Stained – WKT2 / #2

Scissor Man – XTC

Rules and Regulations – PIL

…these butchers – Valérie Dalpé / WKT2 #3

I dream of wires – Gary Numan

So Alive – Love and Rockets

Marie-Ève Larivière / WKT2 #4

Why Can’t I Touch It – The Buzzcocks

Shatter – Liz Phair

Detritus – Melanie Cabay / WKT2 #5

Hemispheres – Rush

Porcelina of the Vast Oceans – Smashing Pumpkins

1979 – Smashing Pumpkins

Bad Dream House – Live WKT2 #6

Murder By Numbers — The Police

Deep Red Bells — Neko Case

Queen — Stone Cold Crazy

Avett Bros. — Satan Pulls the Strings

Corrosion of Conformity — Novus Deus

Ramble On – Led Zeppelin

Information = Insight WKT2 #7

Starless – King Crimson

Red Nightmare – King Crimson

Industry – King Crimson

Entry of the Crims – King Crimson

Marie-Chantale Desjardins – WKT2 #8

Headache – Frank Black

Cactus – The Pixies

Dog Gone – Frank Black and the Catholics

Where is my Mind – The Pixies

Beasts of the Forest – Joleil Campeau WKT2 #9

Going Up – Echo and the Bunnymen

The Disease – Echo and the Bunnymen

Never Stop – Echo and the Bunnymen

Lost and Found – Echo and the Bunnymen

The Sasha Reid Interview – WKT2 #10

Etienne d’aout – Malajube

Skater Boy – Avril Lavigne

I sowed in them blind hopes – The Disappearances of Julie Surprenant and Jolene Riendeau WKT2 / #11

Bus Stop Boxer – The Eels

World of Shit – The Eels

Novocaine for the Soul – The Eels

This Rotten World – The Eels

The Lattice of Coincidence – WKT2 #12

Million Miles – Paul McCartney & Wings

Let Me Roll It – Paul McCartney & Wings

Intro to Loco Part I / Carole Dupont / WKT2 #13

Locomotive Breath – Jethro Tull

Driving Song – Jethro Tull

Passion Play – Jethro Tull

A New Day Yesterday – Jethro Tull

Intro to Loco Part II / Diane Thibeault / WKT2 #14

Si on avait besoin d’une cinquième saison – Harmonium

Intro to Loco Part III / Debbie Buck / WKT2 #15

Thick as a Brick – Jethro Tull

Passion Play – Jethro Tull

Cap in Hand – Jethro Tull

Summerday Sands – Jethro Tull

Inside – Jethro Tull

The Nathalie Bergeron Interview – WKT2 #16

Hard Times – Gillian Welch

I Dream A Highway – Gillian Welch

Amazing Journey: Diane Dery and Mario Corbeil – May 20, 1975 – WKT2 #17

Amazing Journey / Sparks – The Who

Eight Miles High – The Byrds

It doesn’t have to be this way – The Tourists

Longueuil, Nathalie Boucher, and the Warder of the Brain: WKT2 #18

Giant – The The

Rags to Riches – The Blue Nile

Joy Inside My Tears – Stevie Wonder

Who Killed Gilmour Lumber? / Canadian Timber Trilogy Part I

Across the Great Divide – The Band

Who Killed Tom Thomson? / Canadian Timber Trilogy Part II

Whispering Pines – The Band

Who Killed Allore Lumber? / Canadian Timber Trilogy Part III

Chest Fever – The Band

Tears of Rage – The Band

The Last Waltz – The Band

“The Monster of Levis” Guy Field / WKT2 #22

Halo of Flies – Alice Cooper

Second Coming – Alice Cooper

Unfinished Sweet – Alice Cooper

The Ballad of Dwight Fry – Alice Cooper

All The Devils Are Here – Guylaine Potvin / WKT2 #23

Slow and Steady Wins the Race – Pedro The Lion

Premiere Position – Richard Dejardins

Winners Never Quit – Pedro The Lion

The Weight Of Memory / WKT2 #24

Thirty Days in the Hole – Humble Pie

The Mexican – Babe Ruth

Evie Let Your Hair Hang Down – Stevie Wright

Bad Reputation -Thin Lizzy

O Untimely Death! – Ursula Schulze / WKT2 #25

Silent sorrow in empty boats – Genesis

Xanadu – Rush

The Overload – The Talking Heads

Mary Gallagher – The Ghost of Griffintown / WKT2 #26

Hallowed Be Thy Name – Alice Cooper

All Saints – David Bowie

Some Are – David Bowie

Moss Garden – David Bowie

Neukölln – David Bowie

The Sire of Sorrow / Mélanie Decamps – August 9, 1983 WKT2 #27

The Sire of Sorrow – Joni Mitchell

As Falls Wichita, So Falls Wichita Falls _ Pat Metheny and Lyle Mays

Let Them Be Hunted Soundly – WKT2 #28

De Natura Sonoris No. 2 – The Shining

Something goes wrong again – The Buzzcocks

A Poor Sort Of Memory – WKT2 #29

Dreamboat Annie – Heart

Lucie Beaudoin – Flashing Fire Will Follow part 1 / WKT3 #1

The Mule – Deep Purple

No No No – Deep Purple

Fools – Deep Purple

No One Came – Deep Purple

The Montreal Police finally create a Cold Case Squad / WKT3 #2

Un ange gardien – Beau Dommage

Le Picbois – Beau Dommage

Montreal – Beau Dommage

Suzanne Charbonneau – Flashing Fire will Follow part 2 / WKT3 #3

The Man with the Golden Arm – The Sweet

Turn It Down – The Sweet

Into The Night – The Sweet

Solid Gold Brass – The Sweet

The Sixteens – The Sweet

Jocelyne Houle revisited – Flashing Fire will Follow part 3 / WKT3 #4

Rock N Roll – The Runaways

Lovers – The Runaways

Secrets – The Runaways

Dead End Justice – The Runaways

Sylvie Michaud / The Lennoxville Massacre – WKT3 #5

Les gnossiennes – Erik Satie

Pink Flag – Wire

Francine Da Sylva – Glass of Fashion / WKT3 #6

Donimo – Cocteau Twins

Fyt – This Mortal Coil

I’ll bet he’s nice – The Beach Boys

Le Corbeau – Bundock

Otterley – Cocteau Twins

Ribbed and Veined – Cocteau Twins

Great Spangled Fritillary – Cocteau Twins

Tiny Smiles – Lush

Candleland – Ian McCulloch


Sylvie Michaud / The Lennoxville Massacre WKT3 #5

The Lennoxville massacre, or Lennoxville purge, was a mass murder which took place at the Hells Angels clubhouse in Lennoxville, Quebec on March 24, 1985. Five members of the Hells Angels North Chapter, were shot dead. This event divided rival outlaw motorcycle gangs in Quebec, leading to the formation of the Rock Machine club in 1986, a rival to the Hells in the 1990s.

In the 1960s-70s, one of Montreal’s more prominent biker gangs were the Popeyes, who were led by Yves Buteau. In the 1970s, the Popeyes had successfully fought against the Devil’s Disciples and Satan’s Choice biker gangs, and as a journalist at the time noted, “The violence that ensued cemented Quebec’s reputation as one of the most dangerous places for organized crime to do business in North America.” The journalist James Dubro wrote that: “There’s always has been more violence in Quebec. In the biker world it’s known as the Red Zone. I remember an Outlaws hit man telling me he was scared of going to Montreal.” The Hells Angels, who had been looking to expand into Canada, decided that the Popeyes were the best gang to take into their organization. On 5 December 1977, the Popeyes “patched over” to become the first Hells Angel chapter in Canada.

As the Hells Angels continued to grow, in September 1979 the Montreal chapter was divided into two, with the Montreal North chapter based in Laval and the Montreal South chapter somewhat confusingly based in Sorel. The North chapter consisted mostly of former Popeyes members, and still retained Popeye attitudes, in contrast to the South chapter headed by Réjean “Zig Zig” Lessard, who were more disciplined.

The head of the North chapter, Yves “le Boss” Buteau was gunned down in September 1983. In contrast to Buteau, the man who succeeded him, Laurent “L’Anglais” Viau, had a more tolerant attitude towards violence and drug use.  The Laval chapter, which had often chaffed at and had broken Buteau’s rules about not using drugs, swung out of control under Viau’s leadership as Viau himself was addicted to cocaine, alcohol and prostitutes. The rest of the chapter followed his example.

Other Hells Angels felt that the North Chapter bikers were too wild and uncontrollable. They often used drugs they were supposed to sell and were suspected of skimming drug profits that were meant for other Hells Angels chapters. The North chapter had taken at least $60,000 dollars that were meant for the other chapters for themselves, while their lazy aggression frequently led them to being arrested for minor offenses, which put the entire Hells Angels operations in Quebec at risk. Noted one local reporter. “At that moment [in 1985], the Hells Angels were doing a cleanup to become a real criminal organization. Before that, they were disorganized and unruly. They were like a street gang…The [Laval] guys weren’t following the steps the others were taking. They fit the traditional image of bikers…It was going against the new philosophy of the Hells Angels. The other Hells Angels wanted to be businessmen.” The other organized crime groups that the Hells Angels did business with such as the Mafia and the West End Gang had been pressuring the Angels to bring the Montreal North chapter under control. The Hells Angels assassin Yves “Apache” Trudeau later disclosed that relations between the Montreal North and Montreal South chapters of the Hell’s Angels were “ice cold” by the beginning of 1985.

In March 1985, at a secret meeting in Sorel, the Montreal North chapter were declared to be in “bad standing” with the Hells Angels and were to be liquidated. The plan called for two members of the Laval chapter to be forced into retirement, another two members to be given a chance to join the South chapter and the rest to be all killed. A party was announced at the clubhouse of the Sherbrooke chapter in March of 1985. It was attended by the Sorel, Laval, Halifax and Sherbrooke chapters, which were all of the Angels’ chapters in eastern Canada at the time. The four Hells Angels chapters in British Columbia did not attend the party.

At the Lennoxville “bunker” the Angels planned to ambush the Laval chapter as they entered the clubhouse, but the plan failed when most of the targets failed to show up. The party was now extended for a second day, and participation was mandatory. Most of the North chapter now showed up with the notable exceptions of Yves Trudeau, who was in rehab being treated for his cocaine addiction, and Michel “Jinx” Genest, who was in the hospital recovering from a failed assassination attempt by another biker gang. The founding member of Hells Angels Canada and president of the North Chapter, Laurent “L’Anglais” Viau, and four of its members: Jean-Guy “Brutus” Geoffrion, Jean-Pierre “Matt le Crosseur” Mathieu, Michel “Willie” Mayrand, and Guy-Louis “Chop” Adam attended. When the five North Chapter members arrived, they were forced into the center of a room in the clubhouse, where they were all shot dead.

Three members of the Laval chapter who attended the party; Gilles “Le Nez” Lachance, Richard “Bert” Mayrand, and Yvon “Le Pere” Bilodeau were ordered to remove the bodies and wash away the blood. Mayrand and Bilodeau were given the option to retire from organized crime or be killed. Lachance was offered membership in the South chapter, which he accepted. Together with Jacques “Le Pelle” Pelletier and Robert “Snake” Tremblay of the South chapter, Lachance went to see Genest to inform him that he could either join the Sorel chapter or be killed; he chose the former.

Over the next few days, the Laval clubhouse was looted of all the money and drugs stored in it along with the six Harley-Davidson motorcycles. Despite the original plan to kill Trudeau at the Sherbrooke clubhouse, he was contacted at the clinic he was staying at in Oka and told he was expelled from the Angels. Trudeau could rejoin if he killed three people whom the Hells wanted dead.

Pierre de Champlain, a former RCMP officer and a specialist on biker crime stated, “The police noticed that the Laval chapter’s garage that served as their bunker was closed. The girlfriends of the guys who’d disappeared were approached and asked, ‘Have you seen your boyfriend lately?’ and things like that. Then they realized that these people had disappeared, but they didn’t know they were dead.”

In June 1985, a fisherman on the St. Lawrence caught part of the decomposing body of one of the dead bikers. At the bottom of the St. Lawrence River, police divers located the 5 victims wrapped in sleeping bags and tied to weightlifting plates. Also found was the skeleton of Berthe Desjardins, who had been missing since February 1980. Desjardins was the wife of a Hells Angel liquidated by Trudeau as a possible police informer, and while he was at it, Trudeau killed her to ensure her silence.

There has been much confusion over the name that the media gave to the massacre, the Lennoxville massacre. Some say it is a misnomer, that the killings took place in Sherbrooke, and the misconception that the killings took place in Lennoxville arouse from the fact the victims stayed and partied at a motel in Lennoxville before going to the Sherbrooke clubhouse.

That story is false. The club house was – and has always been – located in Lennoxville. The rumour always was that the Hells built the clubhouse in Lennoxville, along the border of Sherbrooke (where they conducted the majority of their illegal activity) to avoid being investigated by the Sherbrooke police. The Hells much preferred coming under the radar of the Lennoxville police, who were considered “bumpkins” and amateurish.

Turning Crown’s evidence

Gilles Lachance, who was profoundly troubled by the massacre he had witnessed, contacted the Sûreté du Québec to state his willingness to work as an informer and to wear a wire.  One of the participants in the killings, Gerry “La Chat” Coulombe, a prospect with the South chapter, was so troubled by the massacre that he also turned informer and wore a wire for the Sûreté du Québec. Yves “Apache” Trudeau, the Hells Angels from the Montreal North chapter who did not attend the Lennoxville meeting, while in prison, realized that he would probably be killed by the Angels, so he cut a deal with the Crown. For testifying against the Hell’s Angels, the Crown treated the 43 murders Trudeau committed between 1970-1985 as manslaughter. He served 7 years for his crimes. As result of Trudeau’s testimony, 90 murders were solved and 19 Hell’s Angels were convicted. Given that Trudeau committed 43 murders first as a Popeye and then as a Hell’s Angel, his lenient sentence attracted much controversy.


Several members of the Hells Angels were present and played a role in the slaughter, but only four – Jacques Pelletier, Luc “Sam” Michaud, Réjean “Zig-Zag” Lessard and later Robert “Snake” Tremblay – were convicted of first-degree murder.

Pelletier, Michaud, Lessard and Tremblay were given life sentences for the murders with no chance of parole before 25 years. They were all granted parole nonetheless on the faint hope clause and ended up serving between 17 and 22 years each. Of the men convicted of the massacre:

  • Robert “Snake” Tremblay was granted full parole on the 30 August 2004 and is living in Montreal. Tremblay told the parole board: “I sincerely deplore having taken the life of another person. I am very aware that I have to watch out for who I associate with and that I have everything to lose if I return to the criminal world.”
  • Luc “Sam” Michaud was granted full parole on 6 May 2005, denying killing anyone, but stated he regretted his involvement with a crime that put him in prison for 20 years. Michaud, described as a zealous Hells Angel at the time of his conviction, returned to Roman Catholicism while in prison and was expelled from the Angels in 1993. He is living in Montreal at present.
  • Réjean “Zig Zag” Lessard, the leader of the plot behind the massacre converted to Buddhism while in prison and left the Angels in 1989.  Lessard was granted day parole on 3 February 2006, telling the National Parole Board that he had become a vegetarian, a pacifist and a Buddhist, saying: “You can’t be a Buddhist and be in that milieu.” Lessard was granted full parole on 11 August 2010 and is living in Montreal.[7]
  • Jacques Pelletier was granted full parole on 6 May 2013, but he was sent back to prison in 2014 after he violated the terms of his parole by associating with Hells Angels.


CODA: May 1980

I’m not really interested in The Hells Angels, and the Lennoxville Massacre, that’s not my turf.

I would like to know how Robert “Snake” Tremblay who is quoted as saying “I sincerely deplore having taken the life of another person. I am very aware that I have to watch out for who I associate with and that I have everything to lose if I return to the criminal world.” in 1980 apparently got away with the murder of Sylvie Michaud:


Jocelyne Houle revisited – Flashing Fire will Follow part 3 / WKT3 #4

The 1977 suspicious deaths of gogo dancers Francine Loiselle and Suzanne Delorme Morrow. A revisit of the Jocelyne Houle case also from 1977.

“Rang 5ieme / Saint Calixte”

Gogo Dancers: Suspicious Deaths

La Presse / September 28, 1977

The Surete du Quebec have revealed the identities of two young women whose bodies were found in the woods of Saint-Calixte north of Montreal.

They are Francine Loiselle, 21 years old with no known address, and Suzanne Morrow, 18 years old from Laval. The two victims earned their living as gogo dancers when they were reported missing.

Acording to the police, the bodies, where they were found, were there since the month of June, 1977.

Autopsies performed at the medical legal laboratory of Quebec on rue Parthenais in Montreal, were not able to determine the exact cause of death, due to the advanced state of decomposition of the bodies. Other tests will be performed at the laboratory.

Deposition of the father of Francine Loiselle: “found in woods along Range 4, St Calixte. Was depressive at the suicide death of friend. “

Un Troisieme Cadavre est retrouve a Rawdon

La Presse / September 29, 1977

The Surete du Quebec were trying to solve the enigma surrounding the death of two teenage girls, now they must also solve a murder, the victim being a 45-year-old man whose body was found on Tuesday morning, next to Route 125 in the Township Rawdon.

According to information obtained, the victim, we cannot at this instant disclose his identity, but he is known to the police. He was shot before being abandoned dead in the ditch. This was probably a settling of accounts.

The police in this affair know the associates and hangouts of the victim in the hours before his death. Yesterday, they had not yet recovered the vehicle that the victim was seen in before his death.

As for the death of teenage girls whose bodies were found in a forest in the region last weekend, SQ investigators concluded a suicide pact.

The two victims in this affair were identified as Francine Loiselle, 21 years old, and Suzanne Morrow, 18 years old, who both worked as dancers for some time in the Saint Jerome region.

Due to the advanced state of decomposition of the bodies of the two young women, pathologists at the medical legal institute are still not able to determine the exact cause of death. What is known for certain, however, they were not shot, and they had been there for several months.

In any case, the identification of the two victims dispelled the doubts of several citizens who believed that one of the victims could be one of the many young girls who had been missing for a few months in Laval and in the region.”

Other information: They were found in the woods bordering “Rang 4ieme in Saint Calixte”. The bodies were found in “un etate squelettique” = Skeletal state, “cote a cote”, 600 to 800 feet from the road.

Francine lived on rue Duroches in Parc Extension, Montreal. Francine Loiselle’s parents lived in an apartment at 1560 Labelle in Longueuil.

Suzanne Morrow lived with her parents at 175 De Galais, Laval des Rapides. This runs parallel to Route 15.

Jocelyne Houle

SQ detective Fernand Yelle sits on the car

24-year-old Jocelyn Houle was a nursing student from Chicoutimi, Quebec. The 5’2″, 100 lbs young woman traveled to Montreal with a group of fellow students to study respiratory therapy for three weeks at The Institute of Cardiology in the city’s Rosemont district.

During her stay Houle was living at a boarding house, The Jeanne Mance Institute at 6675 44e avenue. Wednesday evening, April 13th Houle decides to join seven of her fellow students for a night on the town. They have dinner at The Barnsider which was at 2250 rue Guy:

After dinner they decide to go to the Old Munich at Saint Denis and Dorchester (now boule Rene Levesque). They arrive at 11:30 pm. They drink, they dance, they stay until closing.

Entertainment at The Old Munich / Vieux Munich included polka lines lead by a lederhosen-clad oom-pah band.

They leave the club together around 1:30 am with the intention of moving the party up the street to La Caleche du Sexe at328 Saint Catherine East, just west of Saint Denis.  Jocelyne Houle, who was walking apart from the group with two men, never arrives with her friends.

When they arrive at La Caleche the friends discover Houle isn’t there. They go back to the The Old Munich, but Jocelyne isn’t there either. They then decide that Houle must have gone back to the boarding house. Later when they get home, Houle isn’t at the boarding house. Houle is absent from her classes at the Institute of Cardiology on Thursday and Friday April 14 and 15th. She doesn’t return to her parent’s home in Chicoutimi at the end of the week.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is IMG_0381.jpg

On Sunday, April 17th Houle’s body is discovered about an hour north of Montreal near Saint Calixte. She is found off a gravel road, Rang 5 about 8 feet in from the road lying face down in a few inches of water. Houle is found half-naked and badly beaten about the face and head. Her purse is lying next to her.

Rang 4 merges into rang 5

The body is taken to Montreal and the autopsy to performed by Andre Lauzon at the SQ Parthenais headquarters. The autopsy confirms that Houle was beaten to death. She had a fractured jaw, and many facial injuries caused by “kicks or punches”. Houle had been raped, possibly my several persons. Houle was still wearing some of her clothing, including her bra, which was torn. Investigators conclude that Houle was not killed at the Saint Calixte location, only dumped there.

Claude Vignon Productions

Shining The Light on Cold Cases

The murder of his sister 40 years ago has sent John Allore on a relentless mission to probe unsolved murders


Durham, North Carolina is known for its sprawling tobacco fields and shady walnut trees, but the town also bears the unusual claim of being home to one of the best-known analysts of Quebec homicides.

For almost two decades, accountant John Allore has tirelessly probed unsolved murders in his ultimate quest to uncover the fate of his sister Theresa, found dead in the province’s Eastern Townships region in 1979.

Allore generates an incessant stream of podcasts, tweets, Facebook updates and blog posts – and soon a book from a major publisher – while fully understanding that his sister’s mysterious death will likely never be solved.

But the light Allore shines on Quebec’s murder investigations from the past have exposed an often-shocking pattern of carelessness and indifference.

And although a stern critic of Quebec investigation squads, Allore remains in regular touch with Quebec provincial police officers, who dutifully remain cordial and civil in their dealings. Yet the relationship remains fraught with frustration for Allore, who grew up in Pierrefonds, a city located in the western fringes of the island of Montreal.

“The relationship will always be — must always be — one-sided,” says Allore. “Information goes into that big black box and it can never come out. I can share things with them but they can’t share things with me. But there’s no choice, they’re the only ones who can solve the investigation.”

Becoming a first-time father in 2001 provided Allore with a sudden and intense compulsion to examine the mysterious circumstances surrounding his older sister’s demise.

Theresa Alllore, 19, disappeared outside her dorm room in Compton, Quebec, several kilometres from her school at Champlain College in Compton in the Eastern Townships in early November 1978.

A dorm shortage forced many students like Theresa Allore to commute on a shuttle bus. Missing that bus meant taking a costly taxi or hitchhiking, something Theresa was known to do.

The street outside the dorms was dark and many students feared walking home, according to reports from the school paper. As well, a chronic lack of supervision added much mayhem to the student dorms.

“There are no restrictions, no curfews and especially no parents. They go wild,” read one school article from the period.

Theresa Allore was found dead clad only in a bra and panties in woods about one kilometre away from the dorms on April 13, 1979.

Five months in the snow made it difficult to determine a cause of death.

Theresa Allore had not been sexually assaulted, her clothes were not torn and there was no sign of a struggle, according to police, who suggested that her death might have been caused by a drug overdose.

John, then only 14, recalls how his family was shattered by the ordeal that was worsened when police and school administrators speculated on possible lesbian orgies and LSD parties, none of which jibed with their knowledge of Theresa.

The Allores hired a private investi- gator who concluded that the death was either by a sexual predator or she was dumped off by students after a drug overdose.

Police came to no conclusions and little was done to solve the mystery.


Once fired up with the mission of solving his sister’s tragic death, Allore traveled to Sherbrooke in 2003 to consult the Sûreté du Québec’s homicide file but was disappointed to learn that much of the information was kept out of his hands, including a list of possible suspects, which could not be shown due to Canada’s privacy laws.

DNA evidence and other possible clues, police ruefully confessed, had been tossed out five years after his sister’s death, due to lack of storage.

Police acknowledged that they were not actively trying to solve the mystery due to time constraints.

One criminal investigation expert familiar with the case considers the SQ’s approach a casebook example in a botched investigation.

“The way her body was found showed that the obvious conclusion was homicide but police didn’t handle it that way,” says Kim Rossmo, a longtime police investigator-turned criminology professor and author.

“John took years to come to the conclusion that something wasn’t right and he has had success getting government to acknowledge it a homicide but finding the killer will be difficult,” says Rossmo.

“There’s a high probability that it will never be solved, so he should not set himself up for feelings of failure when he’s got an impossible task ahead.”

Allore’s initially-humble initiative led him to question whether Theresa’s death might have been the work of a serial killer who might have gotten away with many more such killings.

His research grew to a point where he can now recite the chapter and verse of dozens of women killed throughout Quebec over several decades. One police official recently expressed surprise to learn that Allore also has a full-time day job.

From a home office jammed with boxes full of newspaper clippings and coroners’ files, Allore has painstakingly researched and recorded over 60 podcasts that mostly focus on the minutiae of women killed in Quebec In the 1970s.

Each episode features timepiece music as well as painfully vivid details of victims pointlessly massacred as well as the justice system that all-too-often proved inadequate to deal with the heartlessness.

Allore’s Who Killed Theresa? podcast is fueled by information harvested from old crime press articles, corners’ reports sent down from the BANQ library archives and frequently recount stories of such villains as Levis, Quebec-based child-killing pedophile Guy Field, an inveterate offender with an IQ of 58. Fields was known to eat his own feces and routinely molest any vulnerable person in his presence, but in spite of the ample warning signs, authorities set Fields free only to have him murder a child near Quebec City in 1977.

Allore’s meticulous accounts of such heartbreaking and infuriating tales have attracted a worldwide listenership, from London to New York, to Australia, but Allore remains unhappy that his

productions haven’t resonated more in Quebec where attention is most valuable.

“It’s creating an awareness but it’s not meeting the audience it needs to solve murders,” he says.

In one recent podcast Allore recounts the shocking handling of Diane Thibault’s murder near Montreal’s Red Light district in 1975.

Thibault was found dead with a burning stick in her vagina near Red Light, a hideous modus operandi that was similar with another unsolved murder from the time, that of Debbie Buck.

So Allore ordered the coroner’s report on Thibault that was far more costly and extensive than others. He had no idea that the file would reveal a labyrinth of botched justice.

Following a tip from an acquaintance, police arrested Edmond Turcotte.

Turcotte had a motive and provided details of his misdeed in a confession he made to a group of Montreal police investigators.

But a judge later set Turcotte free because he considered the suspect’s IQ to be too low to make a valid confession. The judge also cited possible irregularities in police questioning by a team that included officer Jacques Duchesneau, who later rose to head the Montreal police force.

Allore’s podcast episode on the case led Montreal’s La Presse newspaper to probe the shocking case further. The suspect Turcotte, alas, could not be located and it remains unclear whether he’s still alive.


From the earliest moments of his quest Allore has forged ties with others who have lost family members, starting with Pierre Boisvenu, whose daughter Julie was murdered after disappearing from Sherbrooke in 2002. The two pushed for more victims’ rights but Boisvenu put his efforts aside after being named to the Canadian Senate.

With such new allies in tow Allore was able to pressure the province to create a cold case squad to probe what has now risen to over 700 unsolved murders – two thirds of which are difficult-to-solve underworld slayings — dating back from the 1960s. In In January, 2018, the cold case squad expanded from four full-time investigators to 30.

The initiative, though noble, has solved only three old murders, all within the early years of the squad and Allore is impatient for results.

“They’ve done nothing in the last decade. They have to be held accountable. They haven’t moved the needle,” says Allore.

One tool that police investigators are misusing, Allore argues, is the hold-back. Police routinely withhold or even release slightly incorrect details of a crime in order to weed out false confessions or other distracting dead-ends.

False convictions based on those confessions can prove to be a massive headache and a costly embarrassment for justice systems, as evidenced in the case of Simon Marshall, a mentally handicapped man who was imprisoned for five years and recently compensated $2.3 million following a confession mishap in Quebec City.

Allore argues that there needs to be a statute of limitations on holdbacks, after 25 years, for example, even though it can taint an investigation.

“I admit it’s problematic but you live with the trade offs.”

But perhaps the greatest challenge is the issue of lost or discarded evidence, which has caused many investigations to become virtually impossible to solve.

Other homicides have proven the use of saving all evidence indefinitely. For example San Francisco police preserved DNA from 1969, which recently helped identify a murder victim as Reet Jurvetson, a Montrealer killed near the ranch that housed the Charles Manson cult.

Allore suspects that Montreal police have misplaced evidence as recently as 1994, as he speculates that there is no other explanation

that police couldn’t crack what appears to be the perfectly solvable murder of Melanie Cabay, 19, in the city’s Ahuntsic district.

Allore not only criticizes Quebec homicide sleuthing past and present but even has a take on its future. One recent proposal has it that municipal squads would pass their unsolved cases onto the larger and better- equipped provincial police after a period of time to be determined.

“If they go through with that plan, agencies will simply run out the clock, they’ll do nothing and toss it over the wall to the SQ. How nobody has caught onto this is beyond me.”

If Allore seems a little intense, don’t blame grief, as he insists that his reservoir of motivation does not stem from a refusal to accept the death of his sister.

“Closure and grief are not what drives me,” he says. “It’s the incom- petence and possible criminal negligence of the Sûreté de Québec. They have left me angry and bitter due to the insensitivity towards myself and other families.”

He is also moved by the thrill of hunting down killers, with little eurekas offering payoffs.

“You become a little addicted to risk and adrenaline. Making those little discoveries about cases and information lost and found again becomes a rush.”

The effort, he notes, has come at a cost. After putting up with his obsession for a couple of years Allore’s wife Elizabeth confronted him to ask how long he planned to keep his quest going.

“When does it end?” she asked.

“I told her that if I put an end to this I will be letting Theresa die, just like she died in 1978.”

“That was the trigger. I had clearly chosen. I didn’t choose advocacy and investigation over my children but I chose it over my marriage.” Within three years the couple had split.

Allore’s work ethic might be the result of a lofty academic pedigree launched when he followed a girlfriend to attend Trinity College, one of the seven colleges of the University of Toronto.

Allore’s graduating class included Malcolm Gladwell, Andrew Coyne and Nigel Wright. But Allore, who interviewed Gladwell on a recent podcast, remains humble about his role in the golden generation of the school. “I was just along for the ride and had no idea that I’d be alongside Canada’s establishment.”

He has since buttressed his education with a Masters in Criminal Justice that has better equipped him with his endless research.

The course made Allore a big admirer of the FBI’s Uniform Statistics on Crime, a resource that offers information on every unsolved murder between 1974 and 2016. A similar StatsCan initiative missed its chance at duplicating its efficacy, he rues, by failing to classify crimes by race and gender.

Allore is not holding his breath for Quebec’s new justice minister to suddenly take interest in his plea to launch a public inquiry into the unsolved murders, with specific emphasis on how and why precious evidence was discarded.

And he sees little cause for optimism in the efforts of Marc Bellemare, a Quebec City lawyer who served briefly as Justice Minister in the Jean Charest Liberal government before becoming a leader in the quest for victims’ rights. “He’s always there when the cameras are rolling but he hasn’t advanced a single initiative.”

Quebec’s justice establishment might have given Allore the cold shoulder but he still has one card left up his sleeve. Early in 2018,

Allore, along with longtime National Post journalist – and close friend — Patricia Pearson inked a deal to pen a book about his quest.

Allore’s inaugural authorial effort is finally forcing him to slow down his content – and even remove items from his site — as his publishers have asked him not to expose information that would otherwise seem fresh for his book, due in late 2020.

Allore, however, seems unable to resist giving away the ending. “The bad guy is the investigating force.”

“What I see is a complete lack of consistency and urgency to solve these crimes in what would be an acceptable timeline.”

EDITOR’S NOTE: On January 19, Montreal Police Director Sylvain Caron held a press conference to announce a major restructuring of resources within his department, adding that a special team of investigators will be created in conjunction with the provincial police to resolve some 800 unsolved murders. He credited John Allore and his tireless work for pushing the department to create the new task force.

— Kristian Gravenor is a longtime Montreal journalist, historian and author of Montreal 375 Tales of Eating, Drinking, Living and Loving. He has written extensively on Canadian crime on his site


Suzanne Charbonneau – Flashing Fire Will Follow part 2 / WKT3 #3

Again A Gogo Dancer A Victim Of Murder

Allo Police – May 26, 1974

“Police investigators with the Surete du Quebec de Montreal’s crimmes contre le personne have finally identified the body of a young woman found in the woods in the Sainte-Anne-des-Plaines neighborhood in Montreal.

The victim is Miss Suzanne Charbonneau, a young gogo dancer, 24-years of age who lived at 5158 de Lanaudiere in the East-end of Montreal.

The body of the young girl was found around 8:15 in the morning, Saturday, May 11th by three hunters who with dogs were tracking rabbits in the woods near Sainte-Anne_des-Plaines.

The investigation is being lead by caporal Raymond Piche, assisted by agent C. Tremblay of the crimes contre le personne unit of the SQ de Montreal who revealed that the young woman has not been seen since November 20th, 1973.

Not hearing any news of their child, her parents reported her disappearance to the Montreal police on November 27, 1973.

An autopsy was performed last weekend by Dr. Jean Latourelle of the medico-legal institute of Montreal, to determine the exact cause of death of the young dancer, but the results are not yet known.

A fact remains obvious to the police investigators: Suzanne Charbonneau was a victim of an assassin, and important developments are expected shortly relative to this murder.”


La @SPVM a finalement créé une escouade Cold-Case

Cette semaine, la police de Montréal / SPVM ont annoncé la création d’une unité de traitement des cas non résolus composée d’un lieutenant-détective et de six enquêteurs dont le seul travail consistera à traiter les homicides et les disparitions non résolus de la ville. Depuis 1980, environ 800 cas de ce type ont eu lieu, dont 558 homicides.

Les félicitations vont de soi, c’est un progrès. C’est bien mieux que le système dans lequel fonctionnait la police de Montréal: les détectives en service ne se penchaient que sur les cas non résolus quand ils ne menaient pas d’enquêtes actives (traduction = jamais), les détectives partant à la retraite et les cas non résolus.

Mais avant d’être trop énervés, voyons ce que cela signifie et ce que cela ne signifie pas.

Radio Canada – qui lisaient clairement les points de discussion des médias du SPVM – ont rapidement expliqué comment les détectives pouvaient désormais adopter une «nouvelle approche» à l’aide de «techniques avancées» en technologie de l’ADN. Cela n’est vrai que si vous prenez la peine de préserver les preuves. À l’instar de nombreuses forces armées au Québec, le SPVM n’a guère fait preuve en matière de préservation des preuves. Sur les quatre cas de rhume que j’ai principalement couverts dans les années 70 et au début des années 80 sous la juridiction du SPVM (Lison Blais, Katherine Hawkes, Nicole Gaudreault et Tammy Leakey), la moitié de ces familles a reçu une notification officielle du SPVM indiquant que les preuves ADN avaient été détruites.

La nouvelle équipe – qui ne sera pas composée de nouveaux détectives, mais des bureaux actuels redéployés d’autres unités – serait bien inspirée de tirer des enseignements de l’expérience de la Surete du Quebec.

Créée en 2004, la SQ a débuté avec environ 3 détectives et un arriéré d’environ 600 homicides non résolus. Au début de 2018, ils ont ajouté 25 nouveaux officiers supplémentaires à l’unité. Depuis 2004, ils ont réglé 10 homicides cold-case. Il convient de noter que pendant plus de 10 ans, 3 cas ont été résolus; ce n’est que très récemment qu’ils ont annoncé la résolution des 7 cas supplémentaires. C’est 10 cas en 14 ans. Les «experts» vous diront que c’est un très bon dossier de dédouanement. Ce n’est pas assez pour moi.

Il convient de rappeler à tous que, dans le rapport de 2005 de Statistique Canada intitulé «L’homicide au Canada», la police de Montréal affichait le pire taux de classement absolu parmi toutes les grandes villes canadiennes de 1976 à 2005:

Le total estimatif non réglé de tous les cas de cold case au Québec est d’environ 1700.

Comment est-ce arrivé?

Pour en savoir plus, revenons à cet article de 1966 publié dans The Gazette, intitulé «Assassinats non résolus au sein du quartier général de la police». C’est court donc je vais citer le tout:

«Les polices montréalaise et québécoise sont confrontées à un total de 62 meurtres non résolus remontant à 1953. Ils en ont résolu 63 au cours de la même période.

Sur le nombre total de meurtres non résolus, 43 ont été commis à Montréal et les 19 autres ont eu lieu dans divers centres de la province.

Parmi les victimes figuraient 24 personnages du monde souterrain, tandis que 27 autres étaient des hommes d’affaires, des marchands, des femmes au foyer et des retraités âgés tués lors d’un vol qualifié. Les autres meurtres ont été classés comme des crimes passionnels impliquant des homosexuels et des prostituées.

Les enquêtes se poursuivent – d’une manière ou d’une autre – sur tous les meurtres non résolus. Aucun des cas non résolus n’a été fermé.

Ces chiffres ne comprennent pas la série de meurtres découverts il y a plusieurs mois lors d’une enquête intensive sur des faillites frauduleuses et des incendies criminels à but lucratif dans la province. Alors que plusieurs suspects sont en lien avec les meurtres à la chaux, aucun n’a encore été jugé pour meurtre.

Le meurtre d’une femme âgée de 35 ans, Mme Lysanne Lauzière, dont le corps a été retrouvé il y a quelques semaines dans une fosse peu profonde dans un champ à 60 milles au nord de Montréal, n’est pas non plus incluse. Deux hommes ont été officiellement inculpés du meurtre mais n’ont pas encore été jugés. »

En ignorant les catégorisations misogynes et homophobes qui n’ont rien d’étonnant pour 1966, quoi d’autre se démarque?

Il n’y a pas d’homicides par des étrangers.

Ils ne commenceront à émerger que dans les années 1970, lorsque Allo Police commencera à reconnaître cet horrible phénomène qui atteindra son apogée en 1977.

Pourquoi le Québec a-t-il le pire taux de classement des homicides au Canada? Répondant à cela prendrait beaucoup de temps, lisez mon prochain livre. Je vais vous donner un indice: toute agence aussi centrée sur elle-même, soucieuse de préserver son image, cherche trop à se tourner vers l’intérieur pour même commencer à résoudre des problèmes majeurs de la société.

Il suffit de regarder la réponse du Syndicat des policiers de Montréal après l’annonce par Sylvain Caron, directeur du SPVM, des changements majeurs apportés au déploiement des officiers:

Chers confrères, chères consoeurs,

La Presse rapportait ce matin une restructuration du SPVM.

La voie par laquelle l’information s’est d’abord rendue aux membres concernés souffrait d’un certain déficit de respect, ce que nous avons dénoncé à la direction.

La Fraternité rappelle au Service qu’une attention particulière doit être portée aux relations de travail dans un contexte où les policiers et policières, il n’y a pas si longtemps encore, ont grandement été éprouvés par les nombreuses dysfonctions d’une direction problématique.

Il faut également rappeler que pendant ce temps et malgré une adversité hors norme, les policiers et policières ont su assurer une qualité de service impeccable.

Ceci étant dit, le passé appartenant au passé, nos préoccupations actuelles vont bien au-delà du fait que “personne ne se retrouvera au chômage demain matin” comme on pouvait le lire dans La Presse.

En effet, les changements décidés par la direction comporteront des effets directs et indirects pour plusieurs d’entre vous.

Par conséquent, la Fraternité s’assurera que les modalités de ces changements soient conformes aux droits qui vous sont impartis par la convention collective et au respect qui vous est dû.

À cette fin, nous avons convoqué les représentants syndicaux des unités concernées à une conférence téléphonique qui aura lieu dès aujourd’hui. Dans le contexte d’une transition à laquelle la Fraternité apposera sa vigilance, les suivis seront par la suite dirigés vers les personnes touchées.

Solidairement vôtre,

Mario Lanoie


Recherche et communications

La réponse de Mario Lanoie se résume à un grand “fuck you” à toute tentative d’adaptation et de changement, en disant essentiellement aux les officiers “vous ne faites rien de différent tant que nous ne vous disons pas de faire autrement”.


The Montreal Police finally created a cold case squad

This week the Montreal police / SPVM announced the creation of a cold case unit consisting of one lieutenant-detective and six investigators whose only job will be to address the city’s unsolved homicides and disappearances — since 1980, there have been about 800 such cases, including 558 homicides.

Congratulations are definitely in order, this is progress. It’s a hell of a lot better than the system the Montreal police were previously operating under: on duty detectives looking at cold cases only when they weren’t pursuing active investigations (translation = never), detectives retiring and cold cases never looked at again.

But before we get too giddy let’s consider what this means, and what it does not.

Pundits on the Radio Canada morning shows – clearly reading directly from the SPVM’s media talking points – were quick to observe how detectives could now take a “fresh approach” with the help of “advanced techniques” in DNA technology. This is only true if you bother to preserve case evidence. Like many forces in Quebec, the SPVM has a poor track record of preserving evidence. Of the four cold cases I have predominantly covered from the 1970s / early 80s under SPVM jurisdiction (Lison Blais, Katherine Hawkes, Nicole Gaudreault and Tammy Leakey) half of those families have received official notice from the SPVM that the DNA evidence has been destroyed.

The new squad – which will consist not of new detectives, but current offices redeployed from other units – would do well to learn some lessons from the Surete du Quebec’s cold case experience.

Created in 2004, the SQ started with approximately 3 detectives and a backlog of approximately 600 uncleared homicides. In early 2018 they added an additional 25 new officers to the unit. Since 2004 they have cleared 10 cold case homicides. It should be noted for over a decade the number was 3 cold cases cleared; it’s only very recently that they announced solving the additional 7 cases. That’s 10 case in 14 years. “Experts” will tell you that’s pretty good clearance record. It’s not good enough for me.

It’s worth reminding everyone that in the 2005 Statistics Canada report “Homicide in Canada” The Montreal police had the absolute worst clearance rate for all major Canadian cities from 1976 through 2005:

The estimated uncleared total of all Quebec cold cases is approximately 1,700.

How did this come to be?

For some insight, let’s go back to this 1966 article from The Gazette, “Unsolved Murders Piling Up in Police HQ”. It’s short so I’ll quote the whole thing:

Montreal and Quebec Provincial Police face a combined total of 62 unsolved murders dating back to 1953. They solved 63 in that same period.

Of the total number of unsolved murders, 43 were committed in Montreal while the other 19 were carried out in various centers across the province.

The victims included 24 underworld characters while 27 others were businessmen, merchants, housewives, and old age pensioners killed during robberies. The other killings have been classified as crimes of passion involving homosexuals and prostitutes.

The investigations are continuing – in one way or another – on all the unsolved murders. None of the unsolved cases has been closed.

Not included in these figures are the series of murders uncovered several months ago during an intensive investigation of fraudulent bankruptcies and arson-for-profit cases in the province. While several suspects are being held in connection with the lime-pit murders, none has undergone trial on murder charges as of yet.

Also not included is the murder of a 35-year-old woman, Mrs. Lysanne Lauziere, whose body was unearthed a few weeks ago from a shallow grave in a field 60 miles north of Montreal. Two men have formally been charged with the murder but have yet to stand trial on the charge.”

Ignoring the misogynistic , homophobic categorizations which are not surprising for 1966, anything else stand out for you?

There are no stranger homicides. T

They won’t emerge until the 1970s when Allo Police begins to recognize this horrifying phenomenon that will reach its apex in 1977.

Why does Quebec have the worst homicide clearance rate in Canada? Answering that would take quite a long time, read my upcoming book. I will give you a clue: any agency that is so focused on itself, on preserving its image, is too inward looking to even begin solving major problems of society.

Just look at the response from the Montreal Police Union after SPVM Director Sylvain Caron announced the major changes to the deployment of officers:

Dear brothers and sisters,

La Presse reported this morning a restructurin`g of the SPVM.

The way in which the information first went to the concerned members suffered from a certain lack of respect, which we denounced to the management.
The Brotherhood reminds the Service that special attention must be paid to labor relations in a context where police officers, not so long ago, have been greatly affected by the many dysfunctions of a problematic management.

It should also be remembered that during this time and despite extraordinary adversity, the police officers were able to ensure an impeccable quality of service.

That being said, with the past in the past, our current concerns go far beyond the fact that “no one will be unemployed tomorrow morning” as we read in La Presse.

Indeed, the changes decided by the management will have direct and indirect effects for many of you.

Therefore, the Brotherhood will ensure that the terms and conditions of these changes are in accordance with the rights that are granted to you by the collective agreement and the respect due to you.

To this end, we have convened the union representatives of the affected units to a conference call that will take place today.

In the context of a transition to which the fraternity will put its vigilance, follow-ups will subsequently be directed to the people affected.

In solidarity,

Mario Lanoie
Research and Communications

Mario Lanoie’s response boils down to a grand “fuck you” to any attempts to adapt and change, essentially telling rank and file officers that “you don’t do anything different until we tell you to do different.”