DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Strict//EN" ""> Who Killed Theresa?: 09/01/2004 - 10/01/2004

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Association Canadienne Aide aux Victimes(CAVA-ACAV)
“Appel de Présentation”

Breaking New Ground: Responding, Remembering and Building
Richmond, British Columbia – December 6 and 7, 2004

Vous avez un intérêt à faire connaître votre idée à ce premier évènement, CAVA-ACAV 2004?
Soyez partenaire de cette toute nouvelle Organisation Canadienne qui tiendra son premier Congrès de fondation!

Nous vous invitons à nous soumettre vos propositions de conférence pour l’un des thèmes suivants :
· 1. Nouveaux types de service et initiatives en développement
· 2. Prévention des représailles : Développement des services Communautaires
· 3. Leçons à tirer des expériences des victimes : initiatives locales
· 4. Formation et reconnaissance
· 5. Représailles: Recherche, résultats, application et réaction
· 6. Gestion des urgences et des services aux victimes

DÉROULEMENT DES ATELIERS: Les sessions qui se dérouleront simultanément seront d’une durée de 45 ou 90 minutes. Elles se tiendront les 06 et 07 décembre 2004. Notre comité organisateur recevra des propositions pour des présentations individuelles et sous forme de panel.

CRITÈRES DE SÉLECTION: Les propositions seront évaluées selon les critères suivants: pertinence avec les thèmes de la Conférence; contribution positive aux victimes ou à l’aide aux victimes; en lien avec les recherches les plus récentes; impact positif pour l’acquisition des connaissances des participants; favorable à un apprentissage et un approche nouveaux et innovateurs.

Le Comité responsable du programme de la Conférence pourrait regrouper ensemble plusieurs présentations individuelles couvrant le même sujet. Afin de présenter un programme bien équilibré, le Comité se réserve le droit de solliciter des présentateurs en plus des propositions qui lui seront soumises.

Les présentateurs doivent s’enregistrer et défrayer les coûts d’inscription à la Conférence ainsi que les frais liés au transport, l’hébergement et les repas. Assurez-vous que votre proposition comprend l’information suivante :

· Coordonnées personnelles (nom, titre, adresse, numéros de téléphone et du fax et votre courriel) et la liste des autres personnes participant à la présentation;
· Titre de la présentation, la table des matières; et une description du contenu de la présentation se rapportant au thème de la Conférence;
· Type de présentation : individuelle ou sous forme de panel
· Une courte synthèse de la présentation (30 mots)
· Durée de la présentation – 45 ou 90 minutes
· Choix de la langue de présentation : Française ou Anglaise
· Équipements audio-visuels
· Une courte biographie du (des) présentateur (s) (35 mots chacun)
· Une copie électronique de la présentation à être envoyée avant le 31 octobre 2004
pour traduction

DATE LIMITE POUR LE DÉPOT DES PROPOSITIONS: le 15 octobre 2004. Les propositions en Anglais ou Français sont soumises à : et indiquer comme sujet « Proposition de Conférence »

ENDROIT DE LA CONFÉRENCE: The Park Plaza & Ramada Plaza Hotel, 10251 St. Edwards Drive, Richmond BC V6X 2M9 Ph: 604-278-9611 ou sans frais 1-866-482-8444 Pour en en savoir plus sur la Conférence, voyez la mise à jour sur notre site Internet :


Canadian Association for Victim Assistance, (CAVA-ACAV)
“Call For Papers”

Breaking New Ground: Responding, Remembering and Building
Richmond, British Columbia – December 6 and 7, 2004

Are you interested in showcasing your ideas at this premier event, CAVA-ACAV 2004?
Be a part of this exciting new Canadian organization as we deliver our founding conference!

We invite you to submit proposals for conference sessions that fit within one of following tracks:

· 1. New and Developing Service Models and Initiatives
· 2. Victimization Prevention: Building Community Capacity
· 3. Learning from Victim Experiences: Grassroots Initiatives
· 4. Training and Accreditation
· 5. Victimization: Research Findings, Application and Responses
· 6. Emergency Management and Victim Services

WORKSHOP SESSIONS: Concurrent sessions will be 45 or 90 minutes in length. They are scheduled December 06 & 07 2004. Our planning committee welcomes submissions for individual and panel presentations.

SELECTION CRITERIA: Proposals will be evaluated on the basis of the following criteria: relevance to the conference theme; contribution to victims and victim assistance; link to current research; what the audience will learn; evidence of new and innovative learning and presentation approach.

The Conference Program Committee may request individual presenters join with others who have submitted proposals on similar or complimentary topics. To ensure a balanced program, the Committee reserves the right to solicit presentations in addition to those received through this Call for Papers

Presenters must register and pay the conference registration fee, as well as travel and accommodation expenses. Please ensure your submission includes the following:

· Contact information (name, title, organization, address, phone and fax numbers, and email address) and designated contact person if more than one presenter;
· Presentation title, program track, and description of session and relevance to conference theme;
· Type of session: panel or individual
· Brief description of session (30 words)
· Desired length - 45 or 90 minutes
· Language to be presented in: English or French
· Audiovisual requirements
· Brief presenter(s) bio (35 words each)
· An electronic copy of the presentation by October 31, 2004 for translation

PROPOSAL SUBMISSION DEADLINE: October 15 2004 Proposals in English or French. SEND SUBMISSIONS TO: and indicate ‘Conference Proposal’ in the subject line.

CONFERNCE LOCATION: The Park Plaza & Ramada Plaza Hotel, 10251 St. Edwards Drive, Richmond BC V6X 2M9 Ph: 604-278-9611 or toll free 1-866-482-8444 For: CONFERENCE UPDATES: See the Conference Website:


Fusion Confusion

-----Original Message-----
Sent: Sep 30, 2004 12:09 AM
Subject: Your Sisters Death

Mr. Allore,

I am deeply sorry about the loss of your sister and everything that you and your family have gone through since her death in 1997. I can't say that I know what you are going through because, fortunately, I have never had to go through something as painful and devastating as you are going through. I live in Chapel Hill, NC. Juanita Dalzell has been a friend of mine for 15 years. I also know Andrew. I only saw him occasionally and lastly at his mother's wedding. The reason for my E-Mail to you is this. Juanita is a really nice lady who would do anything for anyone in need. She goes out of her way to help anyone. I'm just asking that you remember that she is hurting deeply now, not like you are, nothing could hurt as bad as losing a sister the way that you did, but she is hurting.

You must be thinking by now, God! What an Asshole this guy is, I lost my sister and he is asking me to be nice to her accused murderer's mother. Well............. I guess I am, not to be nice, just ................I guess maybe sort of nice. I have worked in Chapel Hill for 20 years. I remember when your sister disappeared. It was a VERY sad and upsetting time in Carrboro. I did not know any of her friends but it seemed as though she was a "free spirited" type of person. Loved by all of her friends and is still very much missed by them. I hope that when I die, people will have as many nice memories of me and have just as many nice things to say about me as the people in Carrboro and Chapel Hill had to say about Deborah.

I will remember you and your family in my thoughts and prayers. And please remember that Juanita is a nice and loving person.

September 30th, 2004
7:04 am

To Whom it may concern:

I think you are getting me confused. I am not the brother of Deborah Key, I am the brother of Theresa Allore who died in Compton, Quebec in 1978. Also, I am a supporter of restorative justice, and as such believe all - the victim, victim's family, offender, offender's family - are equally victimized and suffer when such an unfortunate event takes place.

So I am sympathetic to Anita Dalzell. Having lived in her house for four years, I know a lot of her history and know she has not had an easy time.

P.S. If you should in your travels encounter the Key family, I would STRONGLY URGE you not to ask them for sympathy for the Dalzells.


John Allore


Wednesday, September 29, 2004

We grew up on the West Island of Montreal - in Pierrefonds to be exact. In the summer we had a membership to this pool, I think it was called Brierwood. Anyway, Brierwood used to sponsor these trips to see the Expos. They'd hire out a school bus and all the kids would pile in and head to Jarry Park for a double-header. My brother and sister and I wouldn't get home until way past eleven - I'm amazed that our parents would even let us go un-chaperoned.

Bye-bye Boccabella. So long Coco Laboy. I'll miss you Mack Jones.

Expos forever.



Against my better judgment, I have been forced to pollute this blog of sanctity with the following commercial announcement.

My wife has come across some scheme (scam?) whereby she can win a free iPod on the internet. NEVERMIND, the fact that she already owns an iPod, it's the thought that she can obtain something for free that appeals to her.

Here's the deal, if she gets five people to sign up for her through the following link:

Then a brand new pink iPod will suddenly fall in her lap. Those who go through this tedious process (It is tedious, I've been through it) can then in turn coerce five of their friends into getting them a free iPod. (a generation ago, wasn't this known as a pyramid scheme? Before that, wasn't it a Pozzi whatchamacallit?)

Anyway, because I'm a good husband, please help the dear gal out.

Caveat emptor.


Tuesday, September 28, 2004


September 27th, 2004

Mr. John Allore
Carrboro, NC

File of: Theresa Marie Allore
Date of Event: 1978-11-03


I aknowledge receipt of your September a6th 2004 e-mail.

No decision has been made yet. In this case, as I told you before, I need to wait for more complete information from the Surete du Quebec before making a decision.

I really do not know when I will be able to finalize the study of your claim.

Yours Truly,

Andre Beaulieu
Legal Department
Direction de l'IVAC


September 28th, 2004

M. Beaulieu:

I received your fax about my sister's case (120-192-927). You say you are waiting for information from the Surete. This is a rather passive position. Can you contact them and get them to move forward please. When I last spoke with Norman Kelly of
the SQ he told me he had given you all the information you require, so obviously there are some communication problems here.

It is insufficient for you to tell me you cannot tell me when you can finalize my claim. I have been waiting since January 2004 (actually, I have been waiting longer than this: 26 years).

This is a cut and dried situation. She was murdered, she was burried. You asked for an estimate of the funeral expenses, I gave them to you. I am talking about $600 in compensation; a modest sum, this really should not tax the limits of your legal resources.

Please act on this matter with more urgency, you are truly testing my patience in this matter.


John Allore


Sunday, September 26, 2004

Mouths of Babes

So my eldest went and told everyone in second grade about how she had an aunt Theresa who was out hichhiking one night and got murdered by a bad man with a knife.


Now admittedly this isn't as bad as when Callie told the kindergarden class that there were UFOs that flew out of Jordan lake. Or about Catfish-Joe. You know, Catfish-Joe? - also, from Jordan Lake... he's the hermit with the body of a man and the head of a fish.

Anyway, one of the second graders went home and told their mom, who just happens to be our neighbor. My wife says I've gotta make this right, which is problematic. We are already on thin-ice with our neighbors - we're messy and we never go to church.

Now the question you should be asking yourself is, "how did a seven-year-old come to learn of the fate of aunt Theresa (and distort it).

Ya, that would be me. Don't ask why I told her about it, I'm already hung-up enough about such a knuckle-headed error in judgement.


It's a floor wax, it's a dessert topping!

So let me get this straight, ADQ leader, Mario Dumont wants Quebec to be a seperate country, within the sovereignty of Canada?

This is as laughable as when the Seperatists proposed splitting from Canada, but retaining the benefits of Canada's currency and military sevices (if that can be called a benefit). Dumont is a "Shape in Drape", the sooner he goes away the better for La Belle Province.


Friday, September 24, 2004

Surprise, surprise... he had kiddie-porn on his hard-drive.


Daily Tarheel
September 24, 2004

Andrew Douglas Dalzell was scheduled to make his first court appearance
Thursday at the Orange County District Court in Hillsborough.

But Dalzell, who is charged with one count of second-degree murder in the
1997 disappearance of Deborah Leigh Key, did not appear in court.

A Carrboro police arrest report for Thursday shows that Dalzell was
being placed under arrest at noon, the same time he was scheduled to appear in

According to reports, Dalzell was arrested Thursday and charged with
six counts of third-degree sexual exploitation of a minor - a felony

District Attorney Carl Fox said charges of third-degree sexual
exploitation stem from "possessing visual representations of minors engaging in
sexual acts."

Dalzell was placed under arrest at the Orange County Jail, where he was
already being held, and placed under a $20,000 secured bond.

According to Carrboro police reports, the warrant on charges of sexual
exploitation was issued Tuesday.

Dalzell was already being held under a secured bond of $70,000 on a
charge of second-degree murder in relation to Key's disappearance Dec. 1,

He was arrested Sept. 9 at a residence in Stanley.

Police had executed a warrant to search his Royal Park apartment Sept.
2 in Carrboro after his name surfaced in connection with charges of larceny by
an employee.

Investigators said the property seized Sept. 2 was critical in his
arrest but have refused to comment to its exact nature.

Dalzell had been the primary suspect in Key's disappearance and
presumed death since the last time she was seen.

Dalzell and Key were seen together outside Sticks & Stones, a
now-defunct pool hall in downtown Carrboro, after it closed the morning of Dec.
1, according to court affidavits.
Police searched Dalzell's car April 3,
1998, but could not find enough evidence to charge him in Key's disappearance
until Sept. 9.

Fox said Thursday was administrative probable cause day, which allowed
defendants not wishing to plead guilty to miss their first appearance.

Dalzell has yet to make a plea, Fox said. The date of his first
appearance is now set for Oct. 7.


Frequenter L'Oubli

Je n'avait pas d'idée ceci avait commencé.

Récit de la dernière soirée de Julie

Claude Plante
La Tribune

La dernière soirée de Julie Boisvenu, au centre-ville de Sherbrooke, a
été racontée par des témoins appelés à se présenter dans le box des témoins,
jeudi avant-midi, lors du procès d'Hugo Bernier, au palais de justice de

Des amis de la victimes ont raconté comment la soirée s'est déroulée
avant et après que Julie Boisvenu disparaisse. Une amie, son colocataire et un
portier ont été interrogés par les avocats de la défense et de la Couronne.En
après-midi, celui qui a vu pour la dernière fois Julie Boisvenu vivant,
Jean-François Brodeur, a témoigné. Il a raconté qu'après avoir fait l'amour avec
la victime il a voulu aller la reconduire à sa voiture, mais cette dernière a
refusé.Le procès a été ajourné jusqu'à lundi.Bernier maintenant âgé de 29 ans
fait face à des accusations de meurtre prémédité, d'enlèvement, de
séquestration, d'agression sexuelle et de supposition de personne pour des
gestes qu'il aurait commis dans la nuit du 23 juin 2002 au centre-ville de
Sherbrooke à l'endroit de Julie Boisvenu.


Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Tyranny, thy name is Krusty

So Alberta judge Terry Semenuk gave this kid, Christopher Geoghegan 30 days - thirty days - for pieing Alberta Primier, Ralph Klein at a Calgary Stampeders benefit in July. Klein was so shook up he filed a "victim impact statement".

Ya, coconut-cream packs a woop-ass of trauma

"It seems that the accused is not prepared to acknowledge anyone's freedom of expression, other than his own," barked Semenuk, "He is prepared to resort to violence to accomplish his purposes."


I just hope there can be a restorative end to this one. Maybe Klein can visit Geoghegan in prison over cherry cobbler, which is like pie. Corrections might offer a pedicure and some harp music. Over time, there is still hope that we may rehabilitate Geoghegan and reintegrate him into the folds of society. Once released, life on the street won't be easy for Georghegan. The world will have changed after 30 days. His iPod will be obsolete. He'll need to get accustomed to whole new cell phone technology. But still, given time, there's a chance - just a chance - that Georghegan will make it, and who knows, maybe one day he'll be exonerated for his past offences.


Monday, September 20, 2004

Crap, I new I shouldn't have agreed to this...

Man's 'Bad Dream House' brings peace, gives purpose

Sep 18, 2004 : 7:56 pm ET

CARRBORO -- John Allore calls his old home the "Bad Dream House," but in a strange way the house that gave him nightmares also gave him a new purpose in life.

Although he works in Durham as the city's treasury manager and lives in Carrboro with his family, Allore is a well-known victim's advocate in Canada. He speaks to groups there about his experiences with the Bad Dream House and how it served as a catalyst for him to return to Canada and investigate the 1978 disappearance and death of his sister, Theresa, in Quebec.

Allore also will be on a panel at the Unicorn Bereavement Center in Hillsborough next month during a workshop for professionals who work with people who have lost someone to homicide.

A tall, congenial man, with a sometimes wicked sense of humor, Allore enjoys his other life in Canada, where he's known as a feisty advocate who isn't afraid to take on the police establishment. In the Chapel Hill area, people are more likely to know him as the managing director and an actor with the Deep Dish Theater company at University Mall.

Allore, who was raised in Quebec, married a Chapel Hill woman and after moving around the country for a number of years, they returned to the area and bought the house west of Carrboro in April of 2000. As Allore wrote in his blog,, it was a creepy house when he and his wife first went to look at it. Yet the house that made them fear every sound and wake from deep sleep with their hearts pounding, eventually would change Allore's life, and in a way bring him peace.

When they first saw it, the walls were covered with drawings of fantasized nude women, and all types of weapons hung on the walls. The floor was covered with old pizza boxes, cigarette packs and butts and crushed soft drink cans. There were knife marks in the floor, in the walls and on the doors inside the house, and when they went to look at the house before they bought it, they discovered someone was sleeping there. They found out later that someone was Andrew Douglas Dalzell.

On Sept. 10, Dalzell was charged with the second-degree murder of Deborah Leigh Key, who was last seen in downtown Carrboro on the morning of Dec. 1, 1997.

But back in 2000, when Allore and his wife were looking for a fixer-upper to buy, they didn't know that "the lump" they saw sleeping during their afternoon visit to the house was the prime suspect in the disappearance and death of woman.

They bought the house in a neighborhood off Hatch Road, and began cleaning it and fixing it up.

A call from the police

Four weeks after they moved in, the Carrboro police called and asked if they could come out to the house to look for a dead body.

"There are times when you realize life is trying to tell you something," Allore wrote in his blog. "This was one of those times."

Allore and his family allowed police to look around the house, and two weeks later the cops brought a cadaver dog to search the grounds. "Joining them for the proceedings were various patrol officers, the county sheriff's department, a big fat agent from the State Bureau of Investigation, a team of forensic technicians and the gang from Pee Wee's Septic Tank Service," Allore wrote in his blog.

The dog searched the grounds, and Pee Wee and the gang sucked everything out of the septic tank but they didn't find any evidence in the tank. Then suddenly the dog began to scratch in the dirt in the crawl space under the house.

Officers dug in the dirt, and it soon became obvious nothing had been buried there, but they suspected that maybe a body had been there before being moved.

The officers, the forensic team, the dog and the gang from Pee Wee's left. But that was the beginning of nightmares for Allore and his family. "I dreamed about rotting corpses all the time," he wrote in the blog. "I couldn't stop thinking about it."

Allore couldn't stop thinking about Deborah Key, either. "I became very obsessed with Deborah Key and her murder," he said. "I was the last one to really figure out what was going on. It was my wife who suggested, 'Don't you think you should be doing something with your kin rather than somebody you don't even know?'"

The irony is that Allore became obsessed with Key when the real mystery in his life was what happened to his own sister, Theresa, who went missing from her college in Quebec on Nov. 3, 1978. Her body was found face down in a cold creek near the school on April 13, 1979.

The police then, Allore said, did little to investigate the circumstances of her disappearance or her death. They told Allore's family that she probably died from a drug overdose. Allore was 14 years old at the time.

Once Allore's wife suggested he should direct his energies to finding out about his own sister, Allore contacted an old high school friend, Patricia Pearson, who had become an accomplished crime writer. Allore simply wanted to find out what the police knew about his sister's disappearance and death. He was surprised to discover there wasn't much to find out.

Five months of investigation

The police in the area had done a miserable job of investigation, and no one seemed to care very much that a 19-year-old woman had been missing and later found dead.

Allore and Pearson went to work, even though the police didn't cooperate with them or initially allow them to have access to the case file.

It took them five months of investigation, but Allore and Pearson came to believe that Theresa had been killed by a serial killer. They discovered that two other young women had been missing and later found dead in the same general area of Quebec within a 19-month period. They also came up with the names of two possible suspects.

At the conclusion of their investigation, Pearson wrote a long article that appeared in August 2002 in The National Post, Canada's national newspaper. The article gave a detailed description of their search for what really happened to Theresa.

Finally in November 2002, the police in Quebec announced they would launch a full investigation into the death of Theresa Allore. No charges have been filed against anyone in the case.

Her brother, however, has turned his battle to victim's rights and the rights of their families. He heard about a symposium sponsored by the Canadian Department of Justice called "Moving Forward, Lessons Learned from the Victims of Crime."

The forum was to be held on Nov. 3, 2003, the 25th anniversary of his sister's death. "I had to get in on that," he said.

But when he called up to ask if he could participate, he was told it was not open to victims.

That just didn't sit right with Allore, so he and another man whose daughter had been murdered in Canada went to the conference anyway and staged a protest outside, which received media attention.

"From that I made the inner circle of victim advocates in Canada," he said.

Last June, Allore spoke at a conference sponsored by Police Victim Services of British Columbia and made a presentation called, "25 Good Things Revealed Probing the Death of My Sister."

In December, he'll return to Vancouver and present at the Canadian Association for Victim Assistance, a group and conference he helped organize. This time, real victims will have a voice, Allore said.

Families of victims want answers, support and help from professionals trained to deal with their unique problems, he explained. In many cases, that support is provided by volunteers who may be sympathetic but just don't have the proper training.

Allore would like to see to see a system in which professionals are accredited to provide services for victims and their families. "We can empower those people at that level or victims will continue to be bottom feeders in the legal justice system," Allore said. "They already don't have a voice in the justice system. We should give them the tools to find answers."

As he revisited the death of his own sister in recent years, he found that he needed a little help. Carrboro Police Chief Carolyn Hutchison recommended he visit the Unicorn Bereavement Center in Hillsborough.

He did, and got to know Linda Jordan, manager of the center. Now he's agreed to speak at an Oct. 18 workshop there called, "The Worst has Happened; What Now? Working with clients who have lost someone to homicide."

The workshop is designed to provide clinicians with understanding and insight for working with people who are not only experiencing grief but also the trauma associated with murder.

Now when Allore looks back at the scary house he once owned west of Carrboro, he sees it in a different light. "That whole episode did me a great service," he said.

For more information about Allore's work, go to his Web site and read his blogs at:

Folks... enough already... The title, "Bad Dream House" was intended to be funny. It's a joke? The Simpsons first Treehouse of Horror was called Bad Dream House? Git-it?

oh nevermind...


Saturday, September 18, 2004

The people in your neighborhood

Do you know Linda Jordan? Linda Jordan is the director of Duke Community Bereavement Services, and runs the Unicorn Bereavement Center in Hillsborough (just across from the hockey rink). The center is open to anyone in the Triangle community who has experienced a loss due to death, Duke Community Bereavement Services offers this kind of expertise to individuals, health care and Emergency Medical Services professional personnel, and to private companies and corporations. Linda specializes in grief and trauma counseling and has been a mentor to me in dealing with the emotional elements of my sister's death. She has also acted as a great advisor in helping strategize my approach to victim advocacy.

Now it just so happens that I was introduced to Linda by Caroline Hutchison, the chief of police for the town of Carrboro, AND I came to know Caroline after I purchased the "hell-house" > (which triggered an emotional reaction concerning the 25-year mystery of the death of my sister - yada, yada, yada - you get where I'm going here). So, it's funny how life has a strange way of taking its course.

Anyway, on to the point of this post. Last week a reporter from the Herald Sun contacted me to do a story about this whole Dalzell/Deborah Key/my-dead-sister thingy. My initial reaction was, no, my life is not a freak-show for your amusement, but them I thought, well... you've got the blog... you've been in the papers before... since when was modesty and good taste ever an issue for you? So eventually I agreed to do it for two reasons:

1. If the paper would make the focus of the article victim awareness, the work of Linda Jordan and the Bereavement Center, and the upcoming conferences and workshops that I'm involved with, then I agreed we could talk a little bit about Theresa's murder and the creepy-house.

2. The article is just a dry-run for a much bigger story that is coming out in the Canadian national media before the end of the year; I needed to see if I was still capable of putting my ideas across, and avoid sounding too much like an idiot (we'll see about that one).

All this is a big-winded way of saying that I'm having tremendous second-thoughts about this article that's coming out tomorrow in the Herald (Hey, they're reporters, the odds are they'll make me look like an idiot). Yesterday they took my picture (I insisted they do a photo of me and Linda Jordan together). We were out at the Bereavement Center. I tried some small talk with the photographer:

- "So, I guess this work keeps you busy..."

- "Oh yeah, I just did some shots this morning of a sheriff who sidelines as a magician."

Oh, great, me and the magician-sheriff: slow news week.

Anyway, hopefully this won't blow-up in my face. It's been nice flying under the radar for the last few years. I just hope people will learn about the Bereavement Center and the valuable work they do for the community.


Friday, September 17, 2004

Chicken scratching for immortality

I have a bad cold and fever, so my thoughts have not been all that lucid this week. It would not have surprised me if I’d have arrived at work this morning with underwear on my head… I’m a little slow, a little uncalibrated.

Anyway... At the same time I’ve really been enjoying my daughters. Lately, they are all "in the zone" – they can do no wrong. Our house is really messy. I don’t mind that – there are little trails of them everywhere. We have piles of their art work. We keep everything. I have this drawing of two cherries that the middle-one did. I keep it pinned to my dashboard, I love it. (look it’s nothing special, alright… it’s two red dots connected with a green stem – humor me.).

When my wife and I were considering having a third child one of the things that put me over was the fact that, with three children, you lesson the brunt of the pain should something bad happen to one of them (if we were left with just one that would be sad, sad). Only after the baby was born did I realize that I had suddenly increased the odds that something tragic could happen.

Bub, bub, bub.


What’s working:

- Dan Zane’s version of Farewell To Nova Scotia
- Rescue Me
- Anytime John Stewart refers to Robert Novak as a douchebag - that works.
- The sleeping pill my wife gave me last night was pretty good.
- Yesterday I saw a pretty picture of Mt. Orford with all the leaves turning.
- My Brother-in-law will always be cool

What’s note working:

- Phish > you know, they have some nice songs, but they also have some stinkers that call everything else into question.
- Fall > We don’t get turning leaves in N.C. – right now everything is drab-green, covered in three months of dirt and dust.
- Live Strong bands: they've jumped-the-shark
- Jump-the-shark: It jumped-the-shark
- Jane Doe’s book > which I reluctantly had to admit to her that I haven’t cracked passed page 73.
- This whole advocacy-thingy; I may be in over my head.


Which brings us back to my bad cold and fever.

Hey Buddy, you got underpants on your head.


Thursday, September 16, 2004

The Right Victim

As you know by now I have been involved with the organization committee for CAVA – Canadian Association for Victim Assistance – both for developing the groups structure and for planning its first conference, which will take place this December in Richmond, B.C.. One of my responsibilities has been to work with others to come up with the victim stream for the conference – deciding what workshops to present, what speakers to select - and it has been an exercise in tactical frustration deciding who is “the right victim”.

So who is the right victim? It is someone who is neither so close to the pain that they are in danger of falling to pieces, nor someone so distanced from their personal tragedy that they’re libel to put the audience to sleep. Finding the right victim involves discovering the balance between the tear-jerker and the talking head, the bureaucrat and the basket-case. The right victim is some telegenic everyman, someone who can get up on stage, speak briefly – very briefly – about their personal experience, spend about twenty minutes on victim issues – without saying too much concerning their personal believes and convictions – and wrap it all up in time for folks to enjoy their coffee and Black Forest cake.

In short, the right victim doesn’t exist, and it is fantasy to expect a victim to talk openly about their experiences without forcing someone in the audience to cry in their compote. Victims work is never easy, it’s very messy. It’s jarring to the eyes. That’s why most people don’t want any part of it. I well remember my own reaction of shock and embarrassment when one of the victim presenters at last Spring’s B.C. conference lost control and actually struck another attendee. Not that I am above any of this. I myself presented in B.C., what I felt to be a fairly mild introduction to the winding path that has come to be called Who Killed Theresa, but was surprised to read some of the comments submitted post-conference:

-“too anti-police, don’t really know what the victim service worker gained from this workshop.”

-“Spent all the time telling the story of his sister and very little practical information.”

-“The person seemed self-absorbed and I wondered what his motive was.”

-“Please tell the story then have questions!”

Well pardon-the-hell out of me.

Recently, I had the opportunity to speak with Deborah Spungen – a victim, member of NOVA, and author of Homicide, the Hidden Victims – and I asked her, based on her vast experience in these matters, what advice she could give me in preparing Canada’s first victims conference. Without hesitating, she replied, “for god sake, don’t get anyone up there who’s raw!”

So in the past few weeks I have heard all sorts of suggestions; homicide victims, female victims of sexual assault, male victims of sexual abuse (fine, but not over the lunch break), B.C victims, Quebec victims (would anyone understand them?), maritime victims (perhaps one from each province?)… oh wait, don’t forget the Aboriginal victims! Do we want someone who’s a downer (again, not over lunch) or someone who offers hope? How ‘bout a Canadian 911 victim? Whatever you do, don’t invite a feminist; remember the lessons learned from Jane Doe at the Justice Canada conference!

This is more complicated than organizing the Christmas shopping list.

Back to Jane Doe. When did Jane go from being the savior of the victims movement to social pariah? Overnight, Jane Doe has become the big white elephant in the room. The victim no one wants to deal with. People are scared of Jane. Jane provokes. Jane offends. Jane speaks her mind. She’ll get everyone upset. For god’s sake the last thing we want a victim conference to be is upsetting.

What-the-hell is going on here? Jane Doe was the best speaker at last November’s Justice Canada conference. True, behind the scenes she wielded her own feminist agenda, but what did everyone expect? To not be a feminist, would not be Jane. I’ve heard Jane described as a “renegade”; someone who you don’t want involved in the “inner circle” of the victims movement because she has the ability to jeopardize everything. But without voices like Jane, what are we left with? Watered-down palp. Gooey messages of supposed triumph. Hallow tributes to the dead – people who I do not think would have wanted to be revered, but rather would have wished that their experiences would provoke meaningful changes in our criminal justice system. We don’t need the right victim. We need is a person that is willing to speak with honestly and clear precision about their experience.


Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Oh,this is comforting...

Isn't Dix where
Wendell Williamson
is interned?

Allegations Surface Against Dorothea Dix Employees

Three Employees Arrested In Recent Months

RALEIGH, N.C. -- A state mental health employee is charged with taking indecent liberties with a patient. His arrest is not the only trouble Dorothea Dix has had recently with employees and young patients.

Otis Simmons Jr.

Dorothea Dix Mental Hospital said it took action when allegations surfaced about the inappropriate behavior of an employee with a young patient.

Otis Simmons Jr., 26, of Goldsboro, was arrested and charged with taking indecent liberties with a minor in his care. The arrest warrant says the victim is a 15-year-old. The incident happened between June 14 and June 22.

Simmons was placed on unpaid leave from his job as a health care technician in August, which was 2-1/2 weeks after his arrest. He resigned last week.

It is the third arrest Dorothea Dix police have made in the last few months involving employees and children. In May, two other health care technicians were arrested and charged with child abuse.

William Hahn and Robert Barney were both arrested on May 11. The warrant says Hahn did "grab and throw" a child in his care. Barney is accused of "punching" another child "in the face with his fists."
William Hahn (left) and Robert Barney

A hospital representative said Dorothea Dix has a zero-tolerance policy that allows the legal system to run its course. Hahn has since resigned. Barney was allowed to come back to work pending trial. He is now assigned to an adult unit.

The hospital said the three cases are not related and there is not a systemic problem.

Dorothea Dix employs approximately 360 health care technicians who assist in patient care. Criminal background checks are conducted.

In the adolescent unit, male techs work with male patients. Female technicians are only allowed to work with female patients. The hospital director told WRAL there was a clear violation of that policy in the most recent case.


Tuesday, September 14, 2004

I'm working on a piece about victims... stay with me.



What's important

Tonight? The World Cup final? The prospect of an NHL strike looming? It's hockey, baby.

So tonight, my father and brother are talking about Mario Lemieux, not victim advocacy. Le Coup de Monde, Marty... Go Canada!


Monday, September 13, 2004

Soapbox time...

The Canadian Association for Victim Assistance (CAVA-ACVA), Association Canadienne d 'Aide aux Victimes  is a newly formed, Canadian non-profit organization that welcomes all victims, victim serving Non Government Organization's, private individuals or organizations with an interest in furthering victim advocacy. The initial priorities for CAVA-ACVA involve research into advocacy, training / accreditation and communication.  Membership will offer value added training and networking opportunities by attendance at conferences and receipt of national communiqués and newsletters. Current members of this association represent almost every province and territory in Canada. Together they are building the future and setting new standards for the growing need for Victim Assistance in Canada.

Call for Papers

Dear Colleagues,

CAVA-ACAV 2004 Conference Committee will be putting out a “call for papers” in the near future.  At that time we will be seeking presentations that fit in the following six (6) streams (discussion needed on names of streams).  The presentations need to fit either a 45 or 90 minute abstract.  The committee will endeavor to accommodate as many presentations as possible.  Please note that CAVA-ACAV does not have any financial assistance available for presenters. 


1. New and Developing Service Models and Initiatives
2. Victimization Prevention: Building Community Capacity
3. Learning from Victim Experiences and Grassroots Initiatives
4. Training and Accreditation
5. Victimization: Research, Results, Application and Response
6. Emergency Management and Victim Services


The Park Plaza & Ramada Plaza Hotel,
10251 St. Edwards Drive,
Richmond BC, V6X 2M9 CANADA
Telephone: 604-278-9611 or toll free 1-866-482-8444


December 6 and 7, 2004


Thank you.

Dawn Kelly
Conference Planner

Dépôt des présentations

Chers collègues, 

Le Comité organisateur de la Conférence CAVA-ACAV 2004 lancera très bientôt un appel pour le «Dépôt des présentations ». Nous serons alors à la recherche de présentations pouvant s’inscrire dans l’un ou l’autre des six (6) thèmes mentionnés plus bas (la formulation des thèmes reste à discuter). Celles-ci devront être d’une durée de de 45 ou 90 minutes. Le comité s’efforcera d’accommoder le plus de présentations possibles. Veuillez noter que le CAVA-ACAV ne dispose d’aucune assistance financière pour les présentateurs.

Les Thèmes:

1. Nouveaux types de service et initiatives en développement
2. Prévention des représailles : Développement des services communautaires
3. Leçons à tirer des expériences des victimes et des initiatives locales
4. Formation et reconnaissance
5. Représailles: Recherche, résultats, application et réaction
6. Gestion des urgences et des services aux victimes


The Park Plaza & Ramada Plaza Hotel,
10251 St. Edwards Drive,
Richmond BC, V6X 2M9 CANADA 
Téléphoné : 604-278-9611 ou ligne sans frais 1 866 482-8444


Les 6 et 7 décembre 2004



Dawn Kelly
Organisateur des conférences


Sunday, September 12, 2004

Editorial from the Hearld...

...though I hear the Key family is not all that grateful.

Carrboro cracks a cold case

The Chapel Hill Herald
Sep 11, 2004 : 4:16 pm ET

Seven years is a long time. Much has happened in this community over the last seven years -- large developments, more people, new schools, passionate debates, as well as a paralyzing ice storm, an overwhelming blizzard, an unprecedented drought and, yes, many crimes.

It would have been easy during the seven years to simply forget one crime among the many, one inexplicable case among the multitude that were never settled. But the Carrboro Police Department never did.

Ever since Deborah Leigh Key disappeared that night of Dec. 1, 1997, the Carrboro cops kept looking, kept trying, kept hoping. They never closed the book on the case.

Their efforts were rewarded this past week with the arrest of Andrew Douglas Dalzell for the murder of Key. The Carrboro police had, apparently, suspected Dalzell at the beginning of the case, but never had sufficient evidence to bring charges. This time, they got enough, thanks to the solid police work of Anthony Westbrook II, an investigator with the department.

Westbrook had gone to Dalzell's Carrboro apartment because the now-27-year old suspect had requested police assistance for security reasons while he removed personal property in preparation for moving. At the apartment, Westbrook noticed an assortment of different hobbyist items.

Dalzell told Westbrook the items were from Hungate's, the University Mall shop where he used to work. Westbrook didn't let it lay there. Two days later, he called Hungate's manager, who told him that Dalzell had been fired for taking money from the store safe. The manager suspected Dalzell of taking more items from the store.

Westbrook was able to obtain a search warrant for the apartment and there seized a number of items that allegedly had been taken from the Chapel Hill store.

From that evidence, police also apparently learned something that caused them to charge Dalzell with second-degree murder.

There is still, of course, much to be determined, including, naturally, Dalzell's guilt or innocence. He has only been charged with the crime, and remains innocent until proven guilty. Key's body has not yet been found and the police are not yet saying what exactly convinced them to bring the charges.

But for the first time in seven years, Key's family and friends have hope that they will finally find out what happened on that December night so long ago. For the first time in seven years, they can truly hope for closure if not relief.

The Carrboro police have given them that hope.


Saturday, September 11, 2004

In Other News...

Conference will feature two prominent victims

For Immediate Release

MONTREAL - When the Association-quebecoise Plaidoyer-Victimes celebrates its twentieth anniversary next month, two prominent Quebec victims will hold center stage at the organization's 4th symposium on victim issues. John Allore- the brother of Theresa Allore, who was murdered in Compton Quebec over 25 years ago - and Pierre Hugues Boisvenu - the father of Julie Boisvenu, murdered in Sherbrooke in 2002 - have been invited to participate in a special round-table discussion focusing on giving voice to victims experiences.

Mr. Allore and Mr. Boisvenu are no strangers to victim advocacy. In November 2003, both traveled to Ottawa to criticize the Canadian Justice Department's National Victims Conference for failure to invite enough victims to the symposium. Since then both Mr. Allore and Mr. Boisvenu, along with other fellow victims from across Canada, have been working towards the creation of CAVA, the Canadian Association for Victims Assistance, a national organization that would give victims issues a focus and prominence in Canadian society. CAVA will have its first national conference in Vancouver this coming December.

The Plaidoyer-Victimes conference, Les Victimes D?Actes Criminels: Agir Dans Le Respect De La Personne will take place in Montreal on Wednesday, October 27 and Thursday, October 28th. Mr. Allore and Mr. Boisvenu will speak at a special round-table event on October 27th entitled, Les Proches Prennent La Parole. The session will be filmed for a later television broadcast, Allore and Boisvenu are the only two victims invited to participate.

The story of Theresa Allore drew national headlines in the summer of 2002 when herbrother, John Allore - along with National Post writer, Patricia Pearson - presented evidence to suggest that Theresa's death was the result of a sexual assault and murder at the hands of a serial sexual predator, not a drug overdose as Quebec investigators originally speculated. The case of Julie Boisvenu - who was murdered in 2002 - goes to trial Montreal at the end of this month. Hugo Bernier stands acused of the crime.

For information on the conference visit:


Dalzell Investigation, This Smells...

Something here doesn't sound right, it's all too serendipitous. And what's with the 2nd-degree murder charge? They can't make 1st-degree stick?

Trinket trail led police to suspect

By ANNE BLYTHE, Staff Writer
News and Observer

CARRBORO -- It was the last day of August when police got the break they were waiting for in a case that had haunted the department for nearly seven years.

Andrew Douglas Dalzell, a man investigators long had suspected in the disappearance and presumed death of Deborah Leigh Key, asked officers Aug. 31 to stand guard while he removed personal property from an Abbey Court apartment, according to Orange County court documents obtained Friday.

Nine days later, Dalzell, 27, a former Carrboro resident, was booked into the Orange County jail, charged with second-degree murder in the death of Key. Bail was set at $60,000, according to Orange-Chatham District Attorney Carl Fox.

Police will divulge few particulars of their case.

But two warrants -- one from a search Sept. 1 in Carrboro and a second from a search Wednesday in Lincoln County -- provided some details in a case that began Dec. 1, 1997, when Key, 35, was last seen outside a Carrboro bar and pool hall.

Anthony L. Westbrook II, an investigator with the Carrboro Police Department, went to Apt. B-4 in Abbey Court on Aug. 31 and met with Dalzell, according to a search warrant application dated Sept. 1. While inside the apartment, Westbrook noticed jars of paint, small hand-painted figurines, model airplanes, model tanks, handbooks for the game Dungeons and Dragons, and other goods from a hobby store.

Dalzell told the officer he worked at Hungate's Arts, Crafts & Hobbies at University Mall in Chapel Hill, and that the figurines came from there. Dalzell packed some of the items, but left others behind.

Manager interviewed

On Sept. 1, according to the search warrant application, Westbrook spoke with a manager at Hungate's. The manager said Dalzell had worked at the store for fewer than two months and had been fired for taking money from the safe, according to the court document. The manager also suspected Dalzell had taken Warhammer figurines and other items from the store without paying for them, the warrant application states.

Westbrook encouraged the manager to file a larceny report with the Chapel Hill police department. A warrant was granted to search the Abbey Court apartment in Carrboro. From there, police seized paint, brushes, figurines, a chess set, models, a black leather jacket and magic cards. Many of the items, according to court documents, still had Hungate's price stickers on them.

The investigator also seized a piece of paper with "Hungate's Negative Item Control Slip" printed on one side and a handwritten VISA number on the other side.

"It was later determined that Dalzell copied the VISA debit card number from a customer's card while Dalzell was working at Hungate's," Westbrook said in a search warrant application dated Sept. 8. "Dalzell then used the VISA card to obtain $100 worth of Internet service from Svetlana's Agency, LLC, which is an Internet site for Russian mail-order brides."

With that information, Westbrook persuaded a magistrate to issue a warrant for a search of 6406 Sterling Court, a house near Stanley where the suspect and his girlfriend were thought to be living with her parents.

With the assistance of Lincoln County sheriff's deputies, Carrboro investigators searched the home, two cars and a truck this week. They seized more figurines, books, computer equipment and floppy discs. Police will not say what among the items seized led to charges in the Key case.

Police said Thursday that no one else in the Lincoln County home was a suspect in Key's disappearance and presumed death.


Friday, September 10, 2004

So we're clear on this...

The greatest album about grief and suffering is undoubtedly
The Eels' Electro Shock Blues


More on Deborah Key

Friends remember vivacious woman who 'everybody liked'

BY ANDREA UHDE : The Herald-Sun
Sep 9, 2004 : 10:43 pm ET

CARRBORO -- It's been seven years since Deborah Leigh Key vanished.

David Hurlbert's memory has rusted some, his long hair a tad grayer than before. He can't recall when his good friend's birthday was, or in which closet Halloween photos of the costume-clad pals have been tucked away.

For Hurlbert, the feelings aren't as raw as when the then-35-year-old Key disappeared and left little evidence of what happened that night in 1997. The feelings ebb and flow now, surfacing during random conversations or when watching the TV news, when the day's top story seems all-too familiar: a missing woman's dead body found.

Those are the worst days for Hurlbert and his wife Chris. They sit up and listen with the attention of a soldier, wondering if the reporter will say the name they can't forget.

Key's body still hasn't been found, but on Thursday, the feelings returned. Andrew Douglas Dalzell was arrested and charged with second-degree murder in the death of Key, who had been missing for seven years.

Hurlbert recalled seeing Dalzell in the Carrboro bar where Key was last seen Dec. 1, 1997, the night she disappeared. He said he's glad an arrest has been made. He's been as patient with the case as he could, he said.

But "as the detective said at the time, these cases take many years and eventually a break comes," Hurlbert said from his shaded porch in Carrboro.

However, the break in the case doesn't bring closure. "She isn't alive," he said. "I'll never see her again."

But the woman who fought her way through Guillain-Barre syndrome, a disease that paralyzed most of her body for many months, lives on in his memory, Hurlbert said.

He said he still chuckles when he thinks about the Grateful Dead concert he went to with Key in Greensboro. Key used a wheelchair at the time, so they were able to get close to the stage, he said.

They met through mutual friends, and Key quickly befriended the couple. She helped Chris Hurlbert choose a wedding dress, and she was a bridesmaid at the event.

"She was vivacious and someone who enjoyed life," Chris Hurlbert said of Key. "She was a fighter. That sums it up."

Joy Preslar worked at a daycare center with Key, and in their free time they'd dance and giggle in the crowd at AC/DC and other rock concerts. "She was the kind of friend you could call up and go, 'Hey let's go to the beach,' " Preslar said.

For Preslar, the pain of losing her friend hasn't subsided. "I think about her every day, really," she said. "It is very painful to not have her in my life anymore. It's more painful to think that someone did her harm.

"We've been looking for her -- not physically -- but we've been looking for her in our hearts," she said, pausing to sniffle.

"It is a shock to hear he's been arrested and that it's taken this long," she continued.

By 5 p.m. Thursday, calls started streaming in to Preslar's home. Every few minutes, the phone would ring, the sign of another friend in the old group calling to talk about news of the arrest. It was a sign of how many friends Key gathered during her life, Preslar said. "She was one of those people that everybody liked," she said.

As memories continued flowing, a call beeped through on Preslar's phone. She sighed softly. "It's going to be a long night."


So I got the skinny on the Andrew Dalzell investigation (what can I say? I'm connected). I'm sworn to secrecy, but how they caught this guy is not to be believed...

Some clarification... We no longer live in the creepy-house. We bought the Dalzell residence back in 2000 and sold it this past spring. Since there was never any proof that a dead body had been on the premises, we never had to disclose anything to the buyers.

And yes, it was very creepy living there. Much weird stuff. I will tell you one strange story. One night my wife and I were wakened at five in the morning by a pounding on our front door. When I got out of bed I could see the read lights of a squad car pulsing though our windows. A State Trooper was on our front porch saying, "this is the police... are you alright in there?". When I opened the door he explained he was responding to 911 calls that had repeatedly been made from our telephone. It was just me, my wife and my daughters; no one in our house had used the phone.


True story... I have no explanation for it. But it scared the piss out of us.


For those of you wanting more information on the Andrew Dalzell case, here is a "reissue" of Bad Dream House:

Bad Dream House

When my wife and I first moved to North Carolina we were quite restless to put down some roots. We had spent a great deal of our married life living like gypsies, wandering from one city to the next. We moved to North Carolina in search of stability. Our daughter was two at the time, and we had another child on the way. My wife had grown up in Chapel Hill. She still had all her family here. It was a good place to raise a family. We were tired of living in apartments. Two children needed a home. They needed a yard to play in. I was thirty-seven years old. It was time to buy a house.

My wife had here heart set on a “fixer-upper” just outside Chapel Hill. From the outside the house was inviting. It looked like two A-Frames stuck together. A sort of Swiss chalet tucked neatly in the forest. As we approached the front door, my wife braced me with the words; “you’ll have to just go with me on this one.” That’s when I knew we were in for trouble. The odor was the first thing that hit me. As I crossed the threshold, I caught a waft of “the-dog’s-been-pissing-on-the-carpet-for-the-last-eight-months.” Then there were the visuals. The floor was absolutely covered with garbage - think D-Day and Omaha Beach, only substitute dead bodies with old pizza boxes, hard packs of Marlboros, and crushed Mello-Yellow cans. Anything that could hold water was absolutely filled to the brim with cigarette butts. Whoever lived here was an “artist”, there were nude drawings covering all the walls – cartoon anime; cinched wastes and big tits. And a complementary pornography collection in the video cabinet. There was a Christmas wreath over the fireplace mantle. It was March 31st. There were weapons - numb chucks and broadswords and crossbows - a D&D nerd’s dream come true. A thought crossed my mind; This must have been what it looked like when Guns and Roses recorded their first album. Then I heard the music coming from down the hall. There’s someone actually living here?

We started down the hallway. The carpeting was gone, torn up by whatever animal had lived there. The sub-flooring was all that remained. For some reason it was stained dark brown. I came to the door where the music was coming from. The door had about fifty knife marks in it. There were also silver dollar sized holes. It looked like someone had shot at it. I opened the door. Black Flag or Anthrax or some crap was screaming from the stereo. On the bed rested a big fat lump. The lump was sleeping. It was three in the afternoon, and this lump looked comatose. Suddenly, it rolled over, looked me briefly with one glazed fish-eye, and passed out again. I closed the door.

My wife and I were still arguing when we went to bed that night. To cut a long story short - against my better judgment - I decided to go with my wife on this one. We bought the house. Things only got worse. Before the closing, my wife was prone to coming out to the house alone. She would wander around the place and fantasize about all the little improvements we could make. A building inspector - an ex-Marine - advised my wife never to set foot alone in the house again. He had seen the lump on the bed. He thought he looked lethal. At the closing, none of our real estate people showed up. They found the house too disturbing.

Eventually we learned an elderly widow and her teenage son (the lump) had owned the house. We were told that the father had died, and the mother wanted to move to smaller accommodations that were more manageable. Junior was getting to be a handful - what with the medieval arsenal and all. When we walked around the neighborhood people would give us that funny look. You know, that, “you’re the fools who bought that house” look? One neighbor confided in us that the family had lived in the house for twenty years. The son was a quiet boy, but troubled. At age eight he walked up to this neighbor’s daughter on the street, smiled sweetly, and proceeded to pummel her with the brick he had concealed in his hand.

It’s not like we didn’t know what we were getting ourselves into. The evidence was tattooed all over the house. These folks were troubled. There were knife marks everywhere; not only through the bedroom door - on the kitchen walls, on the bathroom ceiling tile, there were so many stab marks on the wood floor in the living room, you’d have thought that Christmas dinner had been carved there. But our feeling was, don’t blame the house for the way it looked. It wasn’t the house’s fault. All it needed was a little love - and several dozen trips to the Home Depot. Fixing what was broken became my spring project. I ripped up the kitchen, tore out the pissed-stained carpet, replaced all the brown stained sub-flooring. I threw out drywall, re-tiled the bathroom floors, pulled-out horrendous amounts of hair and body-gunk from the drains. Finally I decided it would be easier to simply gut the bathrooms altogether.

When I’d go outside to work on the landscaping my wife would quip, “Tell me if you find any dead bodies out there.” I, of course, thought this was hysterical. A corpse would make our home complete. After six weeks, we finished our renovations. We burnt some sage given to us by our real estate agent, placed a small quartz crystal in the southwest corner of each room - because our real estate agent told us this would help with any bad vibes - and moved in.

Of course, it came as no surprise whatsoever when four weeks later the police phoned us up and asked if they could pay us a visit. It turned out the son of the former owner of the house was the lead suspect in a missing person investigation, and the police wished to check the property for a dead body.

There are times when you realize life is trying to tell you something. This was one of those times. It would be fair to say that I have a restless soul. I’ve traveled around a bit. Fifteen years ago, I left Canada, and eventually became an American citizen. I’d like to say that I did this because I love America, but the truer statement is that I’d grown to hate Canada. I hated the Canadian sense of superiority. The idea that Canada offered the same opportunities as the U.S. - only without the crime, without the chaos, without the social problems. It wasn’t true. There were the same problems in both countries. If the U.S. was a freak show in an open-air market, then Canada’s dirt lay hidden in a filing cabinet market “confidential”. Canada kept secrets. More to the point - after my sister died - I believed secrets were being kept from me.

For a long time I was determined to keep moving. I suffered from acute wanderlust. My wife and I traveled all over the country. In eight years we had moved from southeast Texas to Toronto to California to the Carolinas. I had an aunt who said we lived like gypsies – when were we finally going to settle down?

So what were the odds that me of all people - when I finally made the decision to settle down - would chose to buy a home with a dead body on it?


Deborah Key was known for her independence, and for taking risks. On the night of Sunday, November 30th, 1997, the 35-year-old woman was seated at the bar of Sticks and Stones, a local pool hall in Carrboro, North Carolina. Seated at the other end of the bar, within Deborah’s view, was a young man in a leather jacket - his hair tied back in a ponytail. The man was busy drawing nudie pictures in an artists sketch book - pre-pubescent girls in space suits with huge cans; Sailor Moon with a hormonal imbalance. The young man was drinking diet coke. Deborah Key was drinking too much. At some point, Deborah got up from her barstool and ragged on the young man for drawing such disgusting pictures. The man apologized for offending her. He asked if she’d like to join him for a drink. Not at the bar, they would move to a booth at the back. Shortly before closing time the bartender saw the couple together in the corner. She was giving him a back massage. They were very flirtatious. The 5’6”, 115 lbs brunette was last seen at two-thirty a.m. in the parking lot of Sticks and Stones. Key and the young man were leaning up against her car, kissing. A few days later the police found Deborah’s unlocked car, still parked in the lot of Sticks and Stones. Her purse was resting on the passenger side seat. No one has seen her since.

It took police six months to track down the young man with the ponytail. When they asked the man - the former resident of our house - to come in for questioning he said that he would be at police headquarters in the morning. By the time morning came, his lawyer intervened and told them that he would not be available to answer any questions. The police got a search warrant for the young man's car, but the lab results came back inconclusive. They found some bloodstained women’s underwear in the car, but they were never able to link the underwear to Deborah Key. The police were unsuccessful in trying to obtain a search warrant for the house. The car was easy, since it was established that the young man and his car were at the location where Deborah Key was last seen alive on the early morning of December 1st, 1997. The house was another matter; there was nothing to suggest that he and Key had traveled in the car all the way back to the house. The case dragged on for two years. The police had a lead suspect; they just didn’t have a body. And their suspect wasn’t talking.

In December of 1999, our soon-to-be house was put on the market. Immediately, the investigation into Deborah Key’s disappearance began to take life again. Detectives believed that Key’s body might be buried somewhere on the lot. In an effort to gain access to the property, police had agents pose as interested buyers to see if they could learn anything from viewing the interior of the house. They found the place in such a dilapidated state, investigators speculated that their suspect might be deliberately trashing the house, in an effort to keep what was inside hidden. If the place looked like crap, then no one would ever buy it. In the Spring of 2000, the local police chief was making a routine pass in an unmarked car when she noticed that the heaps of garbage that were normally piled up in the front yard, had suddenly been replaced with children’s toys. Someone actually bought this dump? A week later the chief of police called my wife, and asked to pay a visit.

When the police arrived they assured us they wanted to get this over with just as quickly and smoothly as possible. But there were problems. They couldn’t locate a cadaver dog. The one they wanted was from Florida, but he had suddenly been called away on business in Atlanta. It seemed the cadaver dog was over-booked. We would have to wait two weeks before they could search the grounds for a body.

“But couldn’t you just get another dog?”, I asked.

“Well we could, but we want the best. This dog’s the best.”

“Why do we have to wait two weeks?”

“The dog needs the rest. It’s exhausting work.”

Before they left, they wanted to assure us we were in no danger. Deborah Key was most likely this guy’s first kill. Police felt confidant that the body wasn’t buried anywhere in the house. If he did dispose of the body here, then it was probably back in the woods some place. In any case, they did ask us not to speak about the matter to anyone. Word might get around, and they didn’t want to tip off their suspect. Just in case he got it in his head to run. “Or maybe come back and move the body”, an officer added. Finally they all got up, and said that they’d see us in two weeks.

That first weekend we stayed at the beach. Then we stayed at my mother in laws. When we had run out of favors, we came back home. Home. We always talked about how neat it would be to live in a haunted house. But this wasn’t haunted. This was mother-fuckin’ creepy. There was the added benefit that my wife was by now seven month’s pregnant and looked like Mia Farrow in Rosemary’s Baby. So began our two-week FREAK-OUT. We didn’t sleep. Not ever. I went to bed with a baseball bat, the telephone, the phone number of the police department, and a fifteen-pound Mag-lite next to my bed. I’d wake up every night in a cold sweat. Was he coming back? Was there something he left behind? Was he in the house now? He probably still had keys to it. He’s probably standing in the living room right now with a pickaxe just waiting for me to be foolish enough to come out after him.

It didn’t help that we had only lived in the house for a month. The place was scarier because you never knew where anything was. In the dark I’d bump into walls and fumble for the light switch. I couldn’t find anything. My daughter was sleeping in his room. Her bed was in the same spot where that lump rolled over and looked at me. One night she came running out of her room, “Mommy, Daddy, my room scares me!” Oh, that’s okay, pumpkin, the whole house is scary. Didn’t you know? We bought it from Leather-face. There was also the added spooky benefit of living in a deep dark forest. Outside our bedroom window, we’d hear something moving that sounded like a five hundred pound gorilla. I’d be cramming my heart back down my throat before I realized it was a herd of grazing deer. There were lots of critters out there. Possums and coons. Screech owls and badgers. And something that made a sound so terrifying that my wife and I just labeled it the flying-bush-pig. We never did find out what it was.

Somehow we survived. Two weeks passed. One morning a caravan of vehicles came up our gravel driveway.

We said hello again to the local detectives. Joining them for the day’s proceedings were various patrol officers, the County Sheriff’s department, a big fat agent from the State Bureau of Investigation (SBI), a team of forensic technicians, and the gang from Pee Wee’s Septic Tank Service. Everyone gathered round and tried to look like they knew why they were there. Officers discretely slurped on their Wendy’s Big Gulps. From out of the back of a kennel in the police van stepped the star of the show. I was expecting a big, droopy bloodhound. I was surprised to find a svelte, handsome German Shepard. I never got his name. We were never formally introduced. The dog wrangler stepped forward,

“We’ll start with the outer perimeter of the house. It’s a good morning. The ground is wet, so he should be able to sniff through the clay.”

The wrangler pulled the dog up close and shoved a small, black ball against his nose. Then he clipped the lead and let him run loose. The dog bolted off with officers and the wrangler in quick pursuit.

While we were waiting to see what the dog would find, I insinuated myself into the conversation with the agents. My wife remained indoors. Earlier, we had pawned our daughter off on my mother-in-law. We didn’t want her around for this. My wife certainly wasn’t setting foot outside. Unlike me, she held no fascination in seeing a corpse pulled out from under the dirt and the mud. Investigators were confident. They came dressed for the event, decked out in black SWAT fatigues. The SBI agent wore checkered pants and an ugly tie. The mood was intense and full of expectation. Everyone was certain that after two and a half years, the mystery of Deborah Key’s disappearance would finally be solved. The SBI agent spoke,

“We feel pretty confident he buried her out in these woods somewhere. Or maybe in the septic well.”

“In our septic well.”

“Ya. He might have chopped her up and dumped the pieces down the shaft. PEE WEE! YOU WANNA GET THAT SEWAGE PUMP STARTED!”

The dog worked all morning. He sniffed the better part of an acre of our property. The dog came up with nothing. Their efforts were hampered by the soil. In this part of North Carolina it is mostly made up of thick, hard clay. If anything were buried more than three feet deep, the dog would have a tough time picking up the scent. On the other hand, because the ground was so hard, it would be difficult for anyone to dig a grave deeper than three feet. I tried digging a garden in the stuff and the effort practically killed me. My harvest consisted of one dwarf sized pumpkin. Nothing grows in this stuff.

Meanwhile, Pee Wee had managed to suck our septic well dry. Everyone gathered around the well opening and looked down with gruesome expectation. The tank was empty. There were no bones at the bottom. The mood turned from confident to confused.

“If it’s alright, we’d like to check the inside of the house?"

It was the SBI guy. I explained that we had gutted the place. There would be no trace evidence. Everything was gone - the brown-stained flooring, the clumps of hair from the bathroom traps.

“You didn’t keep any of it, did you?”

Sure. It’s in the medicine cabinet next to my collection of human excrement.

As confusion turned to desperation, the recovery party agreed it was time to take the dog under the house. I opened the crawl space door, told everyone to mind the five-foot ceiling; the wrangler did his little black ball trick, and in went the dog.

“What’s in that ball anyway?”, I asked.

“Rotting flesh… I’m just kiddin’ ya’, we don’t use real corpses.”

Funny. Yeah, that’s some joke.

I was getting bored. Three hours and these loafers were still at my house. Then finally, the dog did something. At the back of the crawl space between two central supports, we all watched as the dog paced back and forth, and began scratching on the red dirt floor.

What’s he doing?”

“He’s lighted on something.”

“What’s that mean?”

“It means he’s found something.”

It was scary. The dog kept pacing and scratching. I looked over my shoulder and there was a police officer with two shovels. Everyone began to dig. I couldn’t believe it. A dead body was buried under my house. I’d been under this house alone. I’d come under to repair the insulation, to fix the telephone wiring. The digging took a lot of effort. The space was too small to raise the shovel over your head. You couldn’t get a full arc. It was hot and humid. We kept running out of breath. The clay was as hard as rock. You couldn’t really dig; you had to chip away at the layers. We got two feet down. Finally - after forty-five minutes - we decided to stop. There wasn’t anything here. We didn’t find Deborah Key.

As things wound down the police told us not to worry. The good news was there wasn’t a body buried on our property. The bad news, Deborah Key was still a missing person. Everyone looked discouraged. The way you look when after the first 10 minutes you know the Super Bowl's going to be blowout. Detectives took the dog’s reaction into consideration and formed a theory. After she died, Deborah Key’s body was probably stored under the house for a brief period of time. Her killer took the time to plan how he would finally dispose of the body. Deborah Key was not buried here. If agents couldn’t dig through the clay, then their suspect certainly couldn’t either. The police also wanted us to know that Deborah Key probably hadn’t died in the house. Police believed she was killed earlier, in the killer's car.

After that day with the cadaver dog, I began to have terrible nightmares. I dreamed about rotting corpses all the time. I couldn't stop thinking about it.

Around the same time my daughter was doing some dreaming of her own. One day I caught her walking down the hall muttering to herself,

“No. No Way, I definitely don’t want to have that dream again. O Boy, I don’t want to have that dream where Mom and Dad turn into skeletons.”

She later confided to me that she had a reoccurring dreamed where she was strapped in her car seat, and the car was moving down the road, but no one was driving. I know just how she feels.

Some of my dreams got downright bizarre. There was one where I was at a party and Ralph Nadar sat down beside me. Only he was dressed like this classic, 60s G-man – Joe Friday or something - complete with blue suit and pork pie hat. We struck up a conversation. All at once he pulled out a brown manila envelope, and told me it contained autopsy photos of my sister. Would I like to see them? I had a dream where all the trees outside our house blew down. When I woke up, I swore it had happened. The screeching of the timbers as they snapped was so powerful. I went out on our deck at two in the morning to assess the damage. I found everything unchanged.

For a time I became obsessed with the Deborah Key case. I visited all the places where she had gone - where she was last seen. I did research. I started thinking about maybe solving the crime. Then one day while I was reading about the case on the Internet. I found an article written shortly after Deborah had disappeared. The reporter described Deborah as “loose”. They said she was in the habit of talking to strangers and partying all night. She would sometimes leave with strangers and not be heard from for 3 or 4 days at a time. In a subsequent letter to the editor, Deborah’s mother responded to the article. She said much of what had been written about Deborah was merely hearsay. Deborah’s mother was deeply hurt that the reporter would write such horrible things, as if she, the victim, was somehow responsible for the horrible, inhumane act that was her death. I felt so bad. I wanted to call her up and say I understood. I never called. I figured one of the last people she would have wanted to hear from was this guy who bought the house where the person who had murdered her daughter had lived.

The drama that had unfolded at our house became a common topic of conversation with friends and family. The story of Deborah Key became like a parlor game - shared with guests after a good dinner. One day I called up my brother.

“It’s pretty ironic don’t you think?”

“What is?”

“You know… House with a dead body. It’s a mystery. Theresa’s death’s a mystery.


“I just think it’s odd.”

“Are you at work?”


“We’ll don’t you have work to do?”

“I just think it’s funny that I would move into this house.”

“I guess.”

“I mean, what are the chances…”

“Yeah, okay, I gotta go, I gotta go do some work.”


Walking around Carrboro, I sometimes run into the detectives who are working the Deborah Key case. I see them at the grocery store, or in the summer at a fourth of July party - sometimes in the fall at the Halloween festival. The officers are always with his kids. We talk about how we should get our girls together. Then I’ll say something like, “anything ever happen with Deborah Key?”, and then this look of disappointment crosses their face. Clearly the case disturbs them. They were so sure the body would be on our property. No one can understand how - in a town the size of Carrboro - someone can just disappear. I have been troubled by the same thought.

Eventually our house became just another house. I would take out the garbage, or clean out the gutters... rake leaves. We’ve never had the feeling that the place was haunted; only that it was dead - dead energy. In addition to the crystals, our real estate agent advised us to put up wind chimes and mobiles. The place was like a black hole; it needed movement and activity to bring it to life. Eventually I had to stop thinking about Deborah Key. It might have been my wife who said it, or I may have come to the realization myself – why was I so obsessed with Deborah Key, but kept avoiding my sister’s case? I don’t know. I tried to stop thinking about the spooky place where we lived. But sometimes when I would go under the house to fix something, I'd stop and listen. Nothing. My heart raced. I'd start to hyperventilate. Then I'd come out from under the house and close the door. I'd stand on the sloping side of the hill and stare into the forest, pulling myself back together. Then I'd come back to my family inside and pretend like nothing happened.


Bad Dream House II

So now I'll let the cat-out-of-the-bag. The house I lived in used to belong to Andrew Dalzell. While he lived there, Andrew Dalzell is suspected of murdering Deborah Key.

Holy Irony-of-Ironies Batman!

Murder charge revives '97 case
Carrboro police apprehend suspect

Key was seen with a man about 2:30 a.m. Dec. 1, 1997.

By ANNE BLYTHE, Staff Writer

CARRBORO -- Nearly seven years after Deborah Leigh Key was last seen outside a downtown bar and pool hall, a man who had been a suspect in her disappearance and presumed death was arrested Thursday and charged with second-degree murder.
Andrew Douglas Dalzell was booked into Orange County jail, according to police. Investigators, who have questioned the suspect previously, arrested Dalzell after a search Sept. 2 of his Carrboro apartment and a search Wednesday of a Lincoln County home where he was staying with friends.

During the search Sept. 2, initiated on an unrelated matter, investigators discovered evidence they believed to be related to the Key case, police said. With that information, investigators obtained a warrant to search the Lincoln County home, where sheriff's deputies made the arrest without incident.

Investigator John Lau, who has been on the case in Carrboro since December 1997, when Key was reported missing, would release few details Thursday. He worried that making too much information public might hurt the case.

"I feel relieved that this person has been locked up, that we have made this arrest," Lau said. "This has certainly been one of the longest cases for me. It's been hanging over our heads. We'd pick up a lead and run with it to the end, and often that was a dead end."

Key, born Sept. 21, 1962, went missing on the last day of November 1997. She left her mother's Chapel Hill home and ended up at Sticks and Stones, a bar and pool hall that used to be on Carrboro's East Main Street.

Key had been at the bar for several hours, family reported in 1998, when a sandy-haired, round-faced man in his early 20s came in about closing time. He had a sketch pad with him, and regulars at the bar told investigators back then that on other occasions he had sat at the bar with a soda and roughed out sketches.

About 2:30 a.m. Dec. 1, 1997, Key was seen with the man in a bank parking lot a short distance from the bar, which no longer exists. They were standing between two cars, one of which was her gray 1990 Pontiac Sunbird.

Two days later, one of Key's friends called her mother to say the Sunbird was parked illegally in the bank lot.

Key's mother had not seen Key since Nov. 30, but it was not unusual for them to go several days without contact. Key was 35. Nevertheless, her mother went to the bank lot with an extra set of keys and moved the car.

Things didn't look right, Key's mother said in a 1998 interview. Her daughter's purse and jacket were on the front seat of the car.

After several more days passed without Key showing up, the family called police and reported her missing.

Public help was sought

Key was outgoing and had many friends. At the family's request, police did not go public immediately with the fact that Key was missing. But as weeks passed and nothing turned up, investigators turned to the community for help.

A police sketch artist worked with witnesses and issued a rendering of the man Key was seen with. Investigators asked for help identifying him.

Help came in, and investigators tracked down the suspect. They obtained a warrant in 1998 to search his 1990 Honda and collect several items. But the investigation was hampered, police said, because a lawyer had advised the man not to talk to investigators or take a polygraph test.

Investigators declined to say what they found in the Carrboro apartment this week that gave the case the new turn.

"Our hope is that this arrest will help to bring closure for all concerned," Chief Carolyn Hutchison said in a statement.

"Over the years, we have invested considerable efforts in this case. ... The immense satisfaction we all feel as a result of this arrest is, of course, tempered by compassion and sorrow for Debbie's family and many friends."

Joy Preslar, a musician and friend of Key's since 1985, experienced a range of emotions Thursday after learning of the arrest. Since December 1997, she has wondered about Key's whereabouts and fate almost every day.

"The not knowing has been very frustrating," Preslar said. "This has haunted everybody who knew Debbie because she was such a sweet, kind person.

"This gives it some finality in my mind. I had always tried to hang on to the idea that she might be back. Her friends and her family would like very much to be able to put her to rest. We want to learn about what happened to her."

Key's mother could not be reached for comment Thursday.

Staff writer Anne Blythe can be reached at 932-8741 or


Thursday, September 09, 2004

Ya, ya... I git' it. it's like that Texas chainsaw movie...

Man arrested after chainsaw attack

Thursday, September 09, 2004

A man is in custody after a young woman was attacked with a chainsaw outside an Oakville library on Wednesday.

Police say the unidentified victim and her attacker were among a group of workers doing landscaping outside the library.

The woman is in hospital for non-life threatening injuries to her back and left arm.

Co-workers subdued the man by sitting on him while another ran inside the library to call 911.

Halton Police have yet to determine a motive for the attack.


Watch out now, take care
Beware of falling swingers
Dropping all around you
The pain that often mingles
In your fingertips
Beware of darkness

Watch out now, take care
Beware of the thoughts that linger
Winding up inside your head
The hopelessness around you
In the dead of night

Beware of sadness
It can hit you
It can hurt you
Make you sore and what is more
That is not what you are here for

Watch out now, take care
Beware of soft shoe shufflers
Dancing down the sidewalks
As each unconscious sufferer
Wanders aimlessly
Beware of Maya

Watch out now, take care
Beware of greedy leaders
They take you where you should not go
While Weeping Atlas Cedars
They just want to grow, grow and grow
Beware of darkness (beware of darkness)


12 chosen for grisly case

Jury picked in 2002 sherbrooke slaying. Trial for Julie Boisvenu's rape and murder to include 53 witnesses and five experts

The Gazette
September 9, 2004

Don't listen to anything you hear about Hugo Bernier.

That was the judge's advice to the nine women and three men chosen as jurors yesterday in the long-awaited trial of Bernier, accused of kidnapping, raping and murdering Julie Boisvenu, 27.

The gruesome case dates back to St. Jean Baptiste Day 2002, the day Boisvenu disappeared after a night of celebrating a promotion she had just received at work.

Her battered body was found a week later in a ditch in Bromptonville, near Sherbrooke.

The case shocked Sherbrooke, where Boisvenu's family lives, and captured headlines for weeks. Bernier's lawyer, Marc Labelle, convinced a judge his client couldn't get a fair trial in Sherbrooke and had the hearings moved to Montreal.

What is expected to be a six-week trial finally began yesterday, as more than 200 people filed into a courtroom for jury duty.

As soon as they heard there would be 53 witnesses, including 18 police officers, and five experts, almost half of them sought an exemption.

Those with precarious job situations, full-time classes to attend or criminal records, among other reasons, were let off the hook.

Those who said they couldn't attend because of coming holidays or less-than-perfect command of the French language were not.

Quebec Superior Court Justice Lise Cote then began the process of jury selection, with a question to each of the remaining candidates: Do you have children and, if so, how old are they?

Bernier, 29, wearing a suit and eyeglasses, his dark hair closely cropped, sat silently watching the proceedings from the prisoner's box as the Crown and the defence sifted through the candidates and accepted or rejected them one by one.

The defence rejected a professional headhunter as well as a cafeteria owner who had a 19-year-old daughter.

Crown prosecutor Andre Campagna rejected a receptionist with no children and a taxi driver with two children.

In the end, the jury that will decide Bernier's fate is mostly female, mostly young, and mostly childless, whose occupational backgrounds vary from a housewife to a plumber to a television technician.

Once the jury box was full, Cote gave the jurors leave until Sept. 21, when the Crown is to present its opening arguments.


Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Spa Day - The Horror... THE HORROR!

Prison officials deny hosting inmate 'spa day' News Staff

Word that inmates at a women's jail in Ontario were treated to a 'day at the spa' has sparked a debate on what constitutes appropriate punishment.
Word of an August 21st spa day offered to all inmates at the Grand Valley Institution for Women in Kitchener, Ontario was leaked by one of the prison staff last weekend.

Citing an anonymous source, a report published in Saturday's National Post suggested the prison's inmates had indulged in a "luxurious spa day" during which they "had their colours done" before sipping tea from fine china and listening to a harpist's serenade.

When questioned, however, Correctional Service of Canada spokesperson Diane Russon insisted reports of the day's events were off the mark.
Far from an over-indulgence, Russon says a team of local estheticians volunteered their time to offer instruction in basic hygiene -- not to provide facials and manicures.

"We don't want to see it as pampering," she told CTV News. "We want to be able to see it as teaching the women alternatives, teaching them alternative choices and basic hygiene skills that they may never have had."

Inmates also paint a less than glamourous picture.

"They've blown it so out of proportion that they're making it look like we're little princesses in here," Grand Valley inmate Bonnie Levy told CTV.

"All we had was the opportunity to put cream on our own hands and face... maybe the opportunity to have our nails painted. Our names were picked from a hat."

But the special counsel to the Ontario Office for Victims of Crime isn't buying it.

"I'm not really sure that most people would agree that these are particular everyday skills that people in federal prison need to acquire," Scott Newark told CTV.

Newark feels so strongly, in fact, he calls the day an insult to the victims of crime.

"I don't think Canadians have any degree of confidence when they see these kinds of so-called rehabilitation techniques applied to people in federal prison."

Echoing Newark's outrage, the Police Association of Ontario and Toronto police Chief Julian Fantino have both released statements condemning the activity.

The Toronto Police Association's George Tucker says a sweeping inquiry needs to look into this and all other prisoner treatment policies.
"For once someone will take the bull by the horns and start an inquiry to find out what is going on at corrections Canada."

Built in 1997, Grand Valley houses groups of eight to 10 medium- and minimum-security inmates in cottage-style residences.

Prisoners held at the facility include Marcia Dooley and Mary Taylor. In 2002, Dooley was convicted of torturing and murdering her seven-year-old stepson in a case the judge called "the worst case of child abuse in Canadian penal history."

Taylor was convicted in 2000 of stabbing Toronto undercover police detective Bill Hancox to death with a butcher's knife.

Although they were invited, neither are believed to have attended the 'spa day'.