It’s the kind of thing you hear about on CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, or read about in scary books. That’s what people who live in the Church and Wellesley area had to say about the most recent updates on alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur.
McArthur was already charged with the murders of two men, Andrew Kinsman and Selim Esen, who went missing in the Church and Wellesley area, known as The Village, in June and April of last year.
He’s since been charged with three more counts of first-degree murder.
Remains, which have yet to be identified, were found in the backyard of a property police say is connected to McArthur. The remains were found at the bottom of large plant pots.
In a press conference on Monday, Toronto Police Service said there are likely more victims, but they are unsure of just how many more.
“It’s crazy to think that it’s actually in your own community, not on TV watching CSI or something,” said Dale Harrison, who lives in the area.
Harrison is from the same part of The Village as one of the victims, Andrew Kinsman.
Missing posters of Kinsman lined the streets around The Village for a long time, plastered to telephone poles with layers of clear duct tape. Paper hope. But now, most of the posters have been taken down as word spreads quickly around the community that he’s not coming back.
Harrison said he tore down some of the posters himself because of the painful reminder they must be to Kinsman’s family.
“I tear them down because I feel like it’s a good thing, I think the family’s been through enough, they don’t have to come back and tear down the posters,” he said.
“I just hope it is (McArthur) and (the police) have everything figured out,” Harrison said.
James Langevin, who works and lives in the area, says that with the initial news of the arrest he felt relieved.
However, that relief is now tinged with unease as more victims are being found.
“It’s definitely very scary and disturbing, I’ve heard some stuff from the news, they definitely had enough evidence to make a strong case against him,” Langevin said. “It’s pretty chilling.”
Aimee Cardimell who works at the Wine Rack at Church and Wellesley streets, said that although it’s good an arrest has been made, she wonders why things weren’t connected sooner.
“I think it’s frustrating, the fact that it was said by the police that it’s not a serial killer, it’s an isolated event, and it turns out to be (a serial killer),” said Cardimell.
“I just feel like it could have been investigated a long time ago and it wasn’t.” She said that to have it happen in the community where she works and where she lives is frightening.
“It’s creepy, it’s weird,” said Cardimell. “You hear about serial killers in stories, but it seems like stories. So to have it so close to home, it’s scary.”
“It’s actually a serial killer now,” Harrison added. “Two, three, four, five (victims), it’s a serial killer.”
All photos by Melissa Verge.