Missing Then Murdered

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(Last Updated On: February 28, 2018)

On April 14, 2017, Selim Esen, 44, disappeared in the area of Bloor St. East and Ted Rogers Way, on the outskirts of the Toronto Gay Village. His disappearance would be tied 10 weeks later to that of Andrew Kinsman.

Police said both men were active on social media dating apps, and concern grew in the gay community of a serial killer.

The 519 Church St. Community Centre held a town hall meeting for concerned citizens on August 1 to discuss these and other missing people from the community. At that meeting, Toronto Police Supt. Tony Riviere, the unit commander for 51 Division, said there’s no evidence at this point to “substantiate any criminality” or “to tell us [Kinsman and Esen] are not living.” There was some talk that the disappearances of Esen and Kinsman were linked to men reported missing in 2010 to 2012, but police did not officially connect the two disappearances.

On January 18, 2018, police announced they had made an arrest in Esen’s murder. Bruce McArthur, 66, of Toronto, was arrested on Thursday morning after uncovering new evidence on Wednesday. Police had been investigating McArthur for about two months, but only found enough evidence for an arrest on Wednesday.

Esen, a Turkish citizen, had just completed a week-long peer counselling course at St. Stephen’s Community House at 91 Bellevue Ave which provides social services to vulnerable people in the Kensington Market area. He struggled with drug addiction, and had previously been in an abusive relationship.

The police set up Project Prism, an 8-person task force to investigate the disappearances of Esen and Kisman. At the time, there was no evidence of a serial killer, no evidence the murders were linked and in fact no evidence of murder at all.

On January 18, 2018, police announced they had made an arrest in Esen’s murder. Bruce McArthur, 66, of Toronto, was arrested on Thursday morning after uncovering new evidence on Wednesday. Police had been investigating McArthur for about two months, but only found enough evidence for an arrest on Wednesday.

McArthur is a self-employed landscaper for Artistic Design. Investigators searched four properties in Toronto and one in Madoc, Ont., about 220 kilometres away, that were connected to McArthur. McArthur lived in Madoc.

He has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder. Police have evidence there are other bodies.

 

 

Selim Esen, who arrived from Turkey just a few years before his murder, has not been found as of January 18, 2018. However, the police investigation is ongoing.

As of March 2018, McArthur, 66, has been charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of Andrew Kinsmen, Selim Esen, Majeed Kayhan, Soroush Mahmudi, Skandaraj Navaratnam and Dean Lisowick. Police have conducted extensive forensic searches and found the dismembered, skeletal remains of three unidentified people in planters at 53 Mallory Crescent, where an older couple allowed McArthur to keep some of his landscaping equipment. Police are using fingerprints, dental records and DNA analysis to identify the remains.

Police report that McArthur is not cooperating with the investigation, and that it may take months or even years to complete, as they will be investigating missing persons reports over a period of decades. McArthur is currently on suicide watch.

Various organizations have criticized the police for their handling of the case, suggesting that had the first three men identified in Project Houston been white, the alleged killer may have been caught earlier. Police Chief Mark Saunders said in an interview that if people who knew McArthur had come forward during Project Houston with the information they came forward with during Project Prism and after McArthur’s arrest, the alleged killer may have been caught earlier.


Murder Village Map

 


Vital Statistics

Name: Selim Esen
Age: 44
Gender: Male
Date of Death: April 14, 2017
Manner of Death: unknown at this time
Location: unknown at this time
Suspect Name: Bruce McArthur
Conviction & Sentence: unknown at this time

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Sawyer Cowley

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