Family Seeks Closure to Cold Case

By Ron Fanfair, Toronto Police Service Published: 5 a.m. September 11, 2017

It may have been 20 years since they lost their loved ones, but family members are still seeking closure and are hopeful that someone will come forward and help police find the killer(s) of two women murdered in Regent Park on January 5, 1997.

Two close ups of women
Florence Harrison and Therese Melanson, both 32, were found shot to death in Regent Park on January 5, 1997

At around 3 p.m. that day, a Toronto Community Housing security officer found the bodies of Florence Harrison and Therese Melanson, both 32, while patrolling the sixth-floor stairway of an apartment building at  274 Sackville St.

The sex-trade workers known in the area were both shot.

Harrison was very close to her older sister, Cimarron Macdonald.

“Floey kept us together as a family and everything just fell apart after that,” she said, wiping back tears. “Even though she had her issues, she was always there with us as part of the family… I know there is someone out there who could come forward and let us have some peace and closure.”

Kelly Melanson is also looking for closure for her late mom.

“Hopefully, someone can put their past aside and maybe bring some closure,” she said.

Investigators are looking for information into the murder of Florence Harrison and Therese Melanson in 199751

Homicide Cold Case Detective Sergeant Stacy Gallant said the women were last seen alive 12 hours earlier in the Parliament St. and Dundas St. E. area.

“Numerous people were interviewed with the aim of establishing each victim’s timeline, during the course of the day, before they were killed,” he said. “Forensic testing was done and DNA was established, but it does not link to any known offenders in the national DNA database. The motive of the killing is still unknown.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact Homicide at 416-808-7400, Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-TIPS (8477), online at 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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