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Toronto police identify killer in 1984 murder of 9-year-old Christine Jessop

Last Updated Oct 15, 2020 at 5:50 pm EST

Toronto police have identified the killer believed to be responsible in the murder of nine-year-old Christine Jessop more than 36 years ago.

Police Chief James Ramer says the suspect, Calvin Hoover of Toronto, died in 2015.

Investigators say they believe Hoover committed suicide and there was no foul play associated with his death.

Ramer says he would have been charged with Jessop’s murder had he been alive, and police are looking for more information on him.

He was known to the Jessop family. Police say Hoover and his wife had a neighbour or acquaintance relationship with the family and had been to their home as well.

Ramer said they were able to identify him using DNA and genetic genealogy.

The police chief added he did have a criminal record, but it was unrelated to this investigation.

The little girl from Queensville, Ont., was last seen on Oct. 3, 1984. Her body was found over three months later. She had been sexually assaulted and murdered.

Jessop’s murder drew national attention not only for her gruesome death but for the wrongful conviction of her neighbour, Guy Paul Morin.

Morin was found guilty and sentenced to life in prison.

However, with the advancement of DNA technology, Morin’s conviction was overturned in 1995 based on new evidence.

Morin issued a statement through his attorney on Thursday, saying he’s relieved for the Jessop family.

“This morning, two members of the Toronto Police Service came to my home and told me that they had identified the man who murdered Christine Jessop through DNA found on Christine’s clothing,” Morin wrote.

“I am relieved for Christine’s mother, Janet, and her family, and hope this will give them some peace of mind. They have been through a dreadful ordeal for 36 years since they lost Christine in 1984,” he added.

Morin received $1.25 million from the Ontario government and a public apology after he was acquitted of Jessop’s murder.

“Christine’s murder was a terrible and tragic event. In the circumstances, this is the only statement that I will be making.”

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