Two Whitby women who went missing earlier this month are now presumed dead and a family member has been charged with murder, Durham Regional Police say.
In a statement released on Oct. 15, officers said they were called to a home on Scepter Place, near Garrard Road and Dryden Boulevard, just before 3 p.m. on Oct. 14.
It said police received a call to “check on the well-being” of the two women, identified as 58-year-old Ava Burton and 85-year-old Tatilda Noble, but when officers arrived they couldn’t find the women.
Family worries grow as mystery deepens over missing mother, daughter in Whitby
Police said at the time that officers found evidence at the scene which indicated “suspicious circumstances” surrounding their disappearance, but what was found still isn’t clear.
Family of the two women had asked police to do a wellness check after not hearing from them. Police said it’s believed the women were last heard from around Oct. 11.
In a news release issued Saturday, police said the two women have still not been found, but it’s believed they are dead.
Police appealing for tips after ‘suspicious disappearance’ of mother and daughter from Whitby
“I can’t unfortunately get into the details of what was found or located within this residence,” Acting Sgt. George Tudos told reporters Saturday afternoon.
“I know investigators were here for days and based on all the evidence that they’ve collected that they’ve sent to the centre of forensic sciences and also based on the investigation as it unfolds, they came to the conclusion that they are presumed to be dead and that’s how they got the information to lay charges.”
Tudos said the accused lived at the home with the two women.
He said the man was spoken to after officers were initially called to the home, but wasn’t arrested until Friday evening in Oshawa.
“Right now our concern is trying to find the remains of these two females so that hopefully we can add some closure for the family,” Tudos said.
He added that officers currently don’t have any other scenes where they are investigating and don’t have information on where the women’s remains are located.
Tudos said that investigators have been reviewing surveillance video as part of their probe.
He said this was an “isolated incident” and no other suspects are being sought.
Thirty-year-old Whitby resident Joshua Burton has been charged with two counts of second-degree murder in connection with the deaths of his mother and grandmother.
Tudos said the investigation is ongoing and they are looking for tips that could help them locate the victims’ remains.
Anyone with information is asked to contact investigators at 1-888-579-1520 ext. 5411 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-8477.
— With files from Nick Westoll and Frazer Snowdon
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