Homeless man murdered in Oshawa, Ontario

Graeme Bacque (gbacque@idirect.com)
Thu, 11 Nov 1999 04:40:30 -0500


Drifter beaten to death 

Two men charged with second-degree murder after

By Paul Irish 
Toronto Star Durham Region Bureau

A drifter was beaten to death in Oshawa early yesterday
morning for no reason other than being down and out,
according to police. 

``It was totally senseless,'' said Durham Region police Sergeant
Jim Grimley. 

``There were no words spoken. There wasn't any type of
altercation. We believe it was basically due to the man's
demeanour; he was different.'' 

Police arrested and charged two men with second-degree
murder in the slaying, but not before a five-hour standoff that
brought out the force's heavily armed tactical support unit. 

Grimley said the body of the badly beaten 44-year-old man was
found by passersby on the sidewalk of Ritson Rd. S. under the
Highway 401 bridge at about 2:50 a.m. 

Information from witnesses brought police to an address on
Stacey Ave. about 7 a.m. 

``The (support unit) had early phone contact with one of the
suspects, but he refused to come out,'' Grimley said. ``But they
continued talking, and finally at about noon they started to
leave the house.'' 

With a heavy police presence on the street, the first man walked
out of the house backwards with his hands in the air. 

About 10 minutes later a second man, then a woman, exited the
rooming house without incident and were taken to police
headquarters for questioning. 

The woman was later released. 

Grimley said the victim, whose identity is known but was not
released pending notification of his relatives, displayed
obvious signs of trauma to the upper body. 

He was pronounced dead at the scene. 

Police say the man would travel back and forth between
Montreal and Toronto and would often stay in Oshawa. 

Grimley said it's believed the two suspects followed the man
from a doughnut shop on Bloor St. E. and beat him under the

An autopsy will be performed at the coroner's office in
downtown Toronto. 

Charged with second-degree murder are John Joseph Oliver, 31,
of Stacey Ave., in Oshawa and David Morrison, 21, of no fixed