Matthew Pearson hosts a conversation with Justin Ling on the tragic and resonant story of the disappearance of eight men—the victims of serial killer Bruce McArthur—from Toronto’s queer community. Presented in partnership with the Ottawa International Writer’s Festival , Ottawa Public Library and Library and Archives Canada.
- Monday, October 5, 2020
- 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
- The event will be broadcast live on Library and Archives Canada’s YouTube channel.
Presentation in English with simultaneous French translation.
In 2013, the Toronto Police Service announced that the disappearances of three men—Skandaraj Navaratnam, Abdulbasir Faizi, and Majeed Kayhan—from Toronto’s gay village were, perhaps, linked. When the leads ran dry, the investigation was shut down, on paper classified as “open but suspended.” By 2015, investigative journalist Justin Ling had begun to retrace investigators’ steps, convinced there was evidence of a serial killer. Meanwhile, more men would go missing, and police would continue to deny that there was a threat to the community. On January 18, 2018, Bruce McArthur, a landscaper, was arrested on suspicion of first-degree murder. In February 2019, he was sentenced to life in prison for the murders of eight men.
This extraordinary book tells the complete story of the McArthur murders. Based on more than five years of in-depth reporting, this is also a story of police failure, of how the queer community responded, and the story of the eight men who went missing and the lives they left behind. In telling that story, Justin Ling uncovers the latent homophobia and racism that kept this case unsolved and unseen. This gripping book reveals how police agencies across the country fail to treat missing persons cases seriously, and how policies and laws, written at every level of government, pushed McArthur’s victims out of the light and into the shadows.
Journalist Justin Ling covered the story, from the disappearances to the arrest, and now he’s going back to shed a light on these horrific murders