Cold Case: Margaret McDonald

By Sara Faruqi, Toronto Police Service Published: 8:03 a.m. April 4, 2016
Updated: 10:51 a.m. April 4, 2016

A violent and sadistic crime from 21 years ago that left a community shocked remains unsolved.

A close up of a woman
Margaret McDonald, 80, was found dead on June 24, 1994, after being sexually assaulted and bludgeoned

Margaret McDonald, 80, was found in her house by her granddaughter on June 24, 1994. She had been bludgeoned, her throat was slashed and she had been sexually assaulted. 

She was discovered when a friend, who had dinner plans with McDonald for the evening, became worried when she didn’t answer her door. 

The attacker left behind DNA. Forensic phenotyping has identified the murderer as a man of European ancestry, with blue or intermediate coloured eyes and dark hair. He is believed to have been 20 - 30 when the crime was committed, putting him at 40 - 50 now. 

“This man likely had trouble maintaining intimate relationships with women during that time of his life,” said Detective Sergeant Stacy Gallant.

Detective Sergeant Stacy Gallant makes an appeal for information to solve the murder of Margaret McDonald

Police believe that, at the time of the murder, the man lived in or around the area where McDonald resided on  Lascelles Blvd., in the Midtown area. 

The suspect gained access into her home in the middle of the afternoon by breaking in, said Gallant. Several valuables were also stolen from her home and the house was ransacked. 

“He knew the area enough to break in with confidence. It wasn’t his first break-and-enter and wasn’t his last. He surely committed other crimes before and after,” said Gallant. “There is no doubt people close to him, at the time, and people close to him now know he committed this crime.”

There could be others still, who have suspicions as to who might have committed the murder.

“Perhaps the description of this man triggers you to call us and say ‘you know what, I was thinking about it and someone I know does fit that description,’” said Gallant. 

Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 416-808-7400, Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-TIPS (8477), online at 222tips.com, text TOR and your message to CRIMES (274637). Download the free Crime Stoppers Mobile App on iTunes, Google Play or Blackberry App World.


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