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Investigator says missing Ottawa-area woman found in Ohio after 42 years



OTTAWA — On July 16, 1980, Dale Nancy Wyman left her Ottawa-area home with a suitcase full of her belongings, took a taxi to a Greyhound bus station and vanished. She didn’t say where she was going and her family had no idea where to look.

More than four decades later, a woman from Ohio contacted Wyman’s siblings, who had never stopped looking for her. She had seen a video of Wyman’s younger sister, Brenda Larche, asking for information to help the family find peace and closure, and realized the woman Larche was looking for was her mother.

Wyman built a life in Ohio, had a family, and had died only a couple of months earlier.

“When they sent me the pictures, I almost fell over. There was no doubt in my mind it was Dale Wyman,” said private investigator Linda Davidson.

Ottawa police published a news release on Wednesday saying Wyman’s case had been resolved after someone came forward to report she had been living outside Canada and recently died. Police declined to comment further.

Davidson got involved in the missing persons case around three years ago. The retired RCMP officer is now the director of MUCCI, which stands for Murdered Unidentified Cold Case Investigations. It’s a group of mostly retired police officers and investigators who dedicate their time to trying to solve cold cases.

“When I work a case like this and I talk with the families, I make it a point to say, ‘This may not be an upbeat, successful ending to this story,’” she said.

Davidson started by following up on a tip that someone in Wyman’s family got a call in the late 1980s from a hospital in Saskatoon, searching for relatives of a person in their care.

She contacted the coroner’s office, funeral homes and hospitals in the area but months of searching failed to turn up any unclaimed bodies or anonymous graves that fit.

“I remember saying to my team, ‘This is just too crazy. Where did she go? She didn’t just disappear. Somebody knows something, some way, somehow,’” she said.

Davidson also got in touch with Ottawa police investigators, and said she talked to them about ways to advance the case: making a public plea, releasing updated sketches of what Wyman may look like.

Police released age-progressed sketches in May 2021, and Larche released a video asking for information.

On Dec. 16, 2021, Larche joined a live chat on Facebook with Davidson’s investigators, who use social media and online genealogy tools to try and spread the word of their searches. They also began looking in the United States, particularly in New Hampshire.

“To see if anybody with her descriptors had passed away with the name Dale, Nancy, or Gail or Wyman — we were looking for anything,” Davidson said.

And then the call came from Ohio.

Through her interviews with the family Davidson said she learned Wyman’s father was abusive and she wanted to leave home.

“Back 25, 30 years ago for Dale Wyman, there was no place to go. There was nobody to talk to,” she said.

“It broke my heart, you know. But they’re a good family, they now have closure, plus they have her children and her family, which is amazing.”

Wyman was an extremely private person, Davidson said, and her family is asking for privacy.

“They’re struggling as it is to accept what happened and missing seeing her within two months.”

As for MUCCI, Davidson estimates her group is working on around 100 cold cases. They don’t always get the co-operation of local police, “And I don’t understand why,” she said. “Let people work with it, let us bring closure to the families.”

But the investigators are keen to share their training and expertise.

“It’s a real gift to share with people,” she said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 10, 2022.


Sarah Ritchie, The Canadian Press


‘A wonderful feeling’: Wildfire evacuation order ends for 7,000 from Labrador City



LABRADOR CITY, N.L. – Labrador City residents who were ordered to evacuate last week after the reignition of a once-smouldering fire near the town were allowed to return home Monday.

Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Andrew Furey said the evacuation order officially lifted at noon, though essential workers and their families had returned over the weekend.

In a video livestreamed on Facebook, Labrador City Mayor Belinda Adams welcomed residents home Monday.

“It’s been a lot, but guess what? We’re on the other end of it. It’s a wonderful feeling,” Adams said. “We couldn’t go over it, we couldn’t go under it, we had to go through it. And we did go through it together.”

The mayor extended thanks to the many firefighters that tackled the blaze and members of the community who supported one another during the evacuation order that had lasted for more than one week.

More than 7,000 residents of Labrador City were ordered to leave the evening of July 12 after an abrupt change in weather conditions caused a previously smouldering blaze to grow from six to about 140 square kilometres. The fire advanced 21 km toward Labrador City in just four hours.

Municipal officials asked residents to head east to Happy Valley-Goose Bay, N.L., a six-hour drive along the remote, two-lane Trans-Labrador Highway. There were approximately 200 health-care workers displaced when the evacuation order in Labrador City was issued, Furey said.

Adams said the evacuation of Labrador City was the biggest in the province’s history, “and we didn’t have so much as a person hurt, we had no fatalities, we kept our infrastructure with the fire on the heels of the hospital with the sprinklers on it … we didn’t lose any homes.”

“These are all things that a lot of communities face when they go through a forest fire of the magnitude that we had, so we are very grateful and I know the community is very grateful,” she continued.

Adams said the fire that had threatened the city is now “very low risk,” adding that rain was helping crews douse hot spots. Furey said the fire is a Category 1 blaze — the lowest on a scale of six — with the fire smouldering near ground level.

Fire crews are focused on extinguishing the northern and eastern edges of the fire, Adams said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 22, 2024.

— By Lyndsay Armstrong in Halifax.

The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.

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Toronto Woman Charged with Voyeurism During Massage Appointment



TORONTO — A Toronto woman has been charged with voyeurism after allegedly taking intimate photos of a client during a massage, police said.

In a news release issued Monday, Toronto police reported that the incident occurred on Sunday at approximately 4:30 p.m. The victim was receiving a massage in the vicinity of Bay Street and Gerrard Street West when she noticed that the masseuse was taking intimate photographs of her.

The suspect, identified as Xiuhua Lu, 52, of Toronto, was arrested and charged with voyeurism. Police have not disclosed the name of the business where the alleged incident took place.

Investigators believe there may be additional victims who have not yet come forward. They are urging anyone with information related to the incident or other potential victims to contact the police.

The Toronto Police Service is asking anyone with information to reach out to investigators at 416-808-5200. Tips can also be provided anonymously through Crime Stoppers.

Xiuhua Lu is scheduled to appear in a Toronto courtroom on Monday to answer to the voyeurism charge.

This case follows several other recent incidents involving massage therapists in the Greater Toronto Area accused of misconduct. These include allegations of sexual assault and secret recordings, highlighting a concerning trend within the industry.

For further updates on this story and other related news, please stay tuned.

Contact Information:

  • Toronto Police Service: 416-808-5200
  • Crime Stoppers: 1-800-222-8477


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Transportation Safety Board investigating fire aboard boat abandoned by ‘Lucky 7’




HALIFAX – The Transportation Safety Board of Canada has sent investigators to Newfoundland to determine what caused a fire aboard a fishing boat that forced the crew to abandon the vessel for a life-raft, leaving them at the mercy of the waves for two days.

The independent agency issued a statement saying its investigators will gather information about what happened aboard the Elite Navigator on July 17 when the fire erupted and the crew of seven was unable to send a distress signal.

The boat was reported missing July 18, having transmitted its final signal the night before from far off the coast of northeastern Newfoundland.

In New-Wes-Valley, N.L., an amalgamation of three small fishing communities, friends and neighbours of the seven men braced for the worst.

After spending about 50 hours adrift in the life-raft about 220 kilometres from shore, the fishermen heard a helicopter overhead and one of them fired a hand-held flare that was spotted by searchers on Friday night.

On Saturday, the men — now known as the “Lucky 7” — returned home to the New-Wes-Valley area, where they were met by a boisterous crowd of about 1,000 people, and a community parade was held the next day.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 22, 2024.

The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.

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