Man convicted of murdering 2 Toronto women in 80s sentenced to life in prison

A 62-year-old Moosonee, Ont. man who killed two Toronto women four decades ago has been sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 21 years.

Joseph George Sutherland pleaded guilty in October 2023 to two counts of second-degree murder in the deaths of 45-year-old Susan Tice and 22-year-old Erin Gilmour. The two women were sexually assaulted and stabbed to death in their homes within months of each other in 1983.

In 2008, police announced a $200,000 reward for any information that could lead to an arrest, but nothing came out of the appeal. A similar reward was offered in 2016 with the same result.

RELATED: Toronto police announce arrest in unsolved cold case murders from 1983

For decades, their killer eluded authorities, but advances in science and genetic genealogy led investigators to a suspect they believed was responsible, identified as Sutherland, who was arrested and charged in November 2022.

Sutherland had been living in Toronto at the time of the murders but was residing in Moosonee, Ont. — roughly 850 kilometres north of Toronto — when he was taken into police custody.

Authorities have said without the advanced form of technology, they would have never linked Sutherland to the two murders.

Erin Gilmour and Susan Tice
Erin Gilmour (left) and Susan Tice. Both women were fatally stabbed in 1983.

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