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Toronto police release new details in 2012 west-end murder

TORONTO, Ont. – Toronto police believe a witness may have saw a vehicle connected to a Toronto man whose body was found dumped on an Etobicoke lawn in September 2012 and are urging the person to come forward.

“We’ve received information in the last couple of days that a person or persons saw that vehicle,” Det.-Sgt. Pauline Gray said.

Edwin Villan, 33, was discovered shot to death by a passerby on Midden Crescent in The Westway and Martin Grove Road area Sept. 16.

Gray said the suspect drove a 1998 Nissan Pathfinder with distinctive rims from the area Villan’s body was located. Police said shortly before or at the time of his death, was in the Pathfinder.

“These rims are fairly expensive,” she said.

“They are very identifiable and there’s no doubt in my mind that there’s more than one person out there who saw [the vehicle].”

Police said the vehicle was spotted near Pearson International Airport in the early afternoon hours of Sept. 17.

“My hopes are that they not only saw the vehicle but saw the driver,” Gray said.

The next day the vehicle was set on fire, police said.

“We now know that the vehicle — which was set ablaze — was in fact that 1998 Nissan Pathfinder, which investigations have connected to Mr. Villan’s murder.

Police have not disclosed a motive for the murder.

In September, police released an image of a hubcap found at the scene that is believed to be from the Pathfinder.

At the time, the driver was described as white, 30 to 40 years old, about six-feet tall and between 180 and 200 pounds.