Monday, March 9, 1998
Woman working street corner slainPolice say a 24-year-old prostitute found dead in a downtown parking lot was the victim of a homicide. The body of Donna Oglive, working the streets for about five weeks was discovered about 7 a.m. yesterday in a parking lot off Jarvis St., north of Carlton St. Oglive was three to four month pregnant, friends say.
At least 12 prostitutes have been murdered in Toronto within the past four years -- eight within 22 month.
The news stunned of another prostitute slaying stunned Anastasia Kuzyk, who heads the Street Workers Alliance of Toronto. She knew the woman.
"This level of violence on street sex trade workers -- whether they work inside or outside -- is unprecedented, especially on the street," she said. "This is unacceptable. If girls who were walking home after work or coming off buses were getting killed at this rate, there would be so much public outcry" she said.
"Well, why isn't there over this? Don't hand me the excuse that they're prostitutes -- that's no excuse."
The sex workers' alliance racks violent customers. It distributes a "Bad Dates" pamphlet that gives details of the encounters, including license plate numbers, physical descriptions and, in some cases, names of the men.
Police say they have no firm leads in Oglive's killing. A person living in the area phoned police after spotting her body. She was taken to St. Michael's Hospital and pronounced dead.
Detectives are trying to trace her last steps. Originally from British Columbia, Oglive had recently come to Toronto and worked at Gerrard and Church Sts. She usually began working after midnight, said Detective Sergeant Bob Clarke of the homicide squad.
the area is well-known as a place where street prostitutes walk the sidewalks waiting for work. It's part of an area called "the track."
Oglive, 5 foot 5 and 160 to 170 pounds, is of Filipino decent, with black shoulder-length hair. She was wearing a long, whitish-gray fur coat, black mini skirt and high-heeled white boots.
Police say it's too early to tell if the woman had been sexually assaulted. An autopsy was set for today.
Names of slain sex trade workers are burned into Kuzyk's mind -- a sad list that has just grown by one more. She said it is reason for another vigil, likely next weekend, to remind the public that people are dying.
Oglive is the latest victim in a string of unsolved Toronto prostitute murders over the past four years. Police believe three of those seven homicides may be the work of a predator stalking Parkdale prostitutes.
A task force code-named Project Break Wall is probing the murders of Darlene MacNeill, 35, Virginia Lee Coote, 33, and Juileanne Middleton, 23.
MacNeill's body was discovered last October behind the Royal Canadian Legion on Lake Shore Blvd. W. An autopsy showed she had been choked by hand, then dumped alive into the lake.
Middleton's body was found July 7, 1994, in the lake near the Sunnyside bathing pavilion on Lake Shore Blvd. W.
Three month later, Coote's body washed up on a beach not far from there. Those women had also been choked. All were addicted to crack cocaine.
Police are probing the murders of three more prostitutes. The bodies of Therese Melanson and Florence Harrison, both 32, were found in the stairwell of a Sackville St. apartment in January, 1997. They were both shot to death.
The body of 21-year-old Lisa Lynn Anstey, working as a prostitute near Wellesley and Bleeker Sts. was found last May at Front and Cherry Sts.
On the May 24th weekend in 1996, three Toronto prostitutes were found slain in less than a day. All three were linked.
Marcello Palma, 31, is charged with first-degree murder in the slaying of Brenda Ludgate, 25, Shawn Keegan, 18, and Thomas (Deanna) Wilkinson, 31. The case is before the courts.
Police say there is nothing to indicate Oglive's slaying is linked to the others. They are asking anyone with information about the latest slaying to call the homicide squad at (416) 808-7400 or Crimestoppers at (416) 222-TIPS.
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