As Chief Mark Saunders approved a $50,000 reward for information leading to arrests and convictions in a double homicide two years ago, a grieving father made an appeal to anyone with information to contact police.
Toronto residents Justin Bokma, 42, and Lefranc Matthews, 41, were murdered at an after-hours club on July 1, 2016.
The shootings took place just after 5 a.m. on the second floor of the club, in the College St. and Augusta Ave. area.
Bokma was pronounced at the scene while Matthews was pronounced upon arrival at hospital. They were both employed at the club.
At a press conference at police headquarters on June 13, a tearful Andy Bokma said his family is torn by the tragedy.
“It has been a nightmare,” he said. “I know there are people who know who the perpetrators are and I am appealing to them to come forward and give the police some information. Our family is hurting and we need to put this to rest…We need to apprehend these people and make the city safe.”
The owner of a mobile welding and industrial heating business, Bokma said he was preparing his son to take over the business in the next five-to-seven years.
“Two weeks before his death, we had come up with a plan for him to register for school and come into my office,” he added. “My son was a professional skateboarder who travelled the world and he had also worked as a welder and helper over the years.”
Bokma plans to bury his son’s ashes on June 16.
Detective Steve Henkel said there were about 40 to 50 patrons at the club at the time of the shootings.
“We have had little participation from these patrons,” he said.
Police are looking for three male suspects.
The first is described as black, mid-to-late 20s, approximately 5’9”, skinny build, hair in thin braids to the shoulder. The second suspect is described as black, dark complexion, in his 30s, approximately 5’6”, short, skinny build with larger head and teeth, some of which are crooked. His right arm and hand are smaller and skinnier but still useable, and he has a nickname of “Mo” or “Moe.”
The third suspect is described as black, medium build, medium complexion, early 20s to 30s, approximately 5’9”, clean-shaven.
Investigators believe the suspects were at the club earlier that night.
“We also believe they had been to that location before and they were there to ply their trade which is the selling of illicit narcotics,” said Henkel. “We also believe they were known to some of the patrons as well as the club’s ownership. We believe they continue to frequent after-hours clubs in the city.”
Henkel is requesting the public’s assistance identifying the suspects and the ownership of the club. He also made a direct appeal to those working at after-hour clubs, who know the suspects, to contact police.
Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 416-808-7400, or to give a tip to Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-TIPS (8477), online at 222tips.com, text TOR and your message to CRIMES (274637).