Three decades after killing, Canadian police zero in on who did it

Christine Jessop

Christine Jessop

A lawyer for Jessop's family said they learned from police that Hoover died by suicide in 2015.

Police said a DNA sample from semen found on Christine's underwear was tied to Hoover last week after being sent to a lab in the United States.

Calvin Hoover, who Toronto police say was identified through DNA as the killer of Christine Jessop, 9.

"This morning, two members of the Toronto Police Service came to my home and told me that they had identified the man who murdered Christine Jessop through DNA found on Christine's clothing", Morin wrote.

Her body was found three months later in a farm field 55 kilometres away. Forensic evidence indicated she had been sexually assaulted and stabbed soon after her abduction.

Morin, who'smarried with a family of his own and living an under-the-radar private life, said this will be his only statement.

His conviction was overturned in 1995 based on DNA technology.

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The Ontario government apologized to Morin for his prosecution and paid him $1.25 million in compensation. His wrongful conviction was subject of a judicial inquiry.

He was known to the Jessop family.

Ramer said police were still looking for more information on Hoover, who had lived near Christine's family. "When DNA exonerated me in January, 1995, I was sure that one day DNA would reveal the real killer and now it has". However, Hoover was only identified as a potential suspect through genetic genealogy tracing that was finally confirmed from an existing blood sample, police said. When Hoover's name was produced through the work of Othram, the centre - which happened to have a sample corresponding to Hoover - compared the two samples and found them to be a match.

While he did have a "dated" criminal record, it was of no significance to the killing. Police did not confirm this at a news conference on Thursday, saying only that there was no foul play involved in his death.

Ramer acknowledged on Thursday that identifying Hoover as the killer has "generated many more questions" about the final moments of Jessop's life and that there is still more work to be done on the case.

"If you have any information, no matter how insignificant it may seem, please contact police", Ramer said. "We'd quite frankly like to know what he was doing". "You have to go through a specialized lab, use whole genome sequencing - which is the entire genetic sequence - and not just the parts you want to compare on the database, so that we get a more complete picture", he said. "We are all genuinely relieved that the person actually responsible for this has finally been identified".

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