An Ontario Provincial Police cruiser blocks the scene of what police are investigating as a triple murder-suicide about 300 kilometres north of Toronto, in Ryerson Township, Ont., on Sunday, February 25, 2018. Police in a small central Ontario community say they’re investigating the deaths of four people as a triple murder-suicide. Ontario Provincial Police say they believe a man killed two women and another man before killing himself in Ryerson Township, Ont., about 300 kilometres north of Toronto. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Salmaan Farooqui

Police investigate triple murder-suicide north of Toronto

Ontario police are investigating a triple murder-suicide about 300 kilometres north of Toronto, in Ryerson Township, Ont.

A man killed three members of the same family — two women and one man — at their central Ontario home before taking his own life, police said Sunday.

Ontario Provincial Police said the incident, which is being investigated as a triple murder-suicide, took place in Ryerson Township, Ont., a rural community about 300 kilometres north of Toronto.

OPP Det. Insp. Martin Graham said a friend had stopped by the home for a prearranged visit Friday night around 7:30 p.m. and “came across this tragic scene” and called 911 immediately.

“The fourth deceased in the residence is not related by blood to the three victims of the homicide, but is also a resident of Ryerson Township,” Graham said.

He added that the three family members all lived in the house where they were found dead.

On Sunday, police had blocked off access to the home as they continued their investigation.

The home sits at the end of a rural road in the isolated community of just under 650 people.

Graham, who’s leading the investigation, said police found guns at the home, but wouldn’t say whether any of the victims were shot, only that all four had signs of trauma.

He said he wasn’t sure when the killings occurred.

“We’re trying to narrow down the time that this incident took place,” Graham said. “We know it took place sometime between Wednesday evening and up to 7:30 p.m. on Friday.”

Police have not released the names of the dead. Graham said police won’t be commenting on any potential cause of death until a post-mortem is complete, which might happen later this week.

The township’s deputy reeve, Barbara Marlow, said she hadn’t heard of a tragedy of this scale happening in the area during the 45 years she’s lived there.

“It’s just a small community, so everybody is quite shocked,” she said.

Cathy Still, the mayor of the nearby village of Burk’s Falls, Ont., where Ryerson’s population does its socializing, said she too was surprised by the deaths.

“This is really strange. We’ve only had maybe four incidents in the last 60 years of anything involving shootings or guns, or anything like that.”

Outside a Tim Hortons coffee shop in Burk’s Falls, Ahren Simmons spoke about the tragedy.

“It’s a very low crime area, it’s frightening,” Simmons said.

“Stuff does happen, but not often at all.”

The last major incident he could remember was two years ago, when a woman was killed during a robbery.

Salmaan Farooqui, The Canadian Press

Related: Toddler swept away in Ontario floods

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Hamhuis hangs up his skates

The Nashville Predators defenceman and Smithereen spent 16 years in the NHL

Terrace and District Aquatic Centre to reopen in September

City lays out pandemic safety plans for reopening indoor recreation spaces, including pool and arena

Province, feds, Wet’suwet’en announce progress in MOU talks

Community engagement process launched to implement northern B.C. First Nation’s rights and title

Province, feds, Wet’suwet’en announce progress in MOU talks

External community engagement process launched to help implement Wet’suwet’en rights and title

Terrace Off Road Cycling Association’s HuB project is close to completion

Additional grant funding means the pump track will be asphalt instead of dirt

‘Don’t kill my mom’: Ryan Reynolds calls on young British Columbians to be COVID-smart

‘Deadpool’ celebrity responds to premier’s call for social influence support

Captain Horvat’s OT marker lifts Canucks to 4-3 win over Blues

Vancouver takes 2-0 lead in best-of-7 NHL playoff series with St. Louis

Widow of slain Red Deer doctor thanks community for support ahead of vigil

Fellow doctors, members of the public will gather for a physically-distanced vigil in central Alberta

Protesters showcase massive old yellow cedar as Port Renfrew area forest blockade continues

9.5-foot-wide yellow cedar measured by Ancient Forest Alliance campaigners in Fairy Creek watershed

Taking dog feces and a jackhammer to neighbourhood dispute costs B.C. man $16,000

‘Pellegrin’s actions were motivated by malice …a vindictive, pointless, dangerous and unlawful act’

Racist stickers at Keremeos pub leaves group uneasy and angry

The ‘OK’ hand gesture is a known hate-symbol

VIDEO: World responds to B.C. girl after pandemic cancels birthday party

Dozens of cards and numerous packages were delivered to six-year-old Charlie Manning

Expected fall peak of COVID-19 in Canada could overwhelm health systems: Tam

National modelling projections released Friday show an expected peak in cases this fall

Most Read