Police search landfill site for loveseat in Todd murder probe
Close to a dozen Waterloo Regional Police officers are continuing to search the local landfill site in connection with the homicide of Catherine Todd.
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WATERLOO REGION — Close to a dozen Waterloo Regional Police officers are continuing to search the local landfill site in connection with the homicide of Catherine Todd.
Officers were looking for a small loveseat believed to have been taken from Todd’s apartment at 50 Lorraine Ave. in Kitchener.
Todd, 48, has not been heard from for almost two weeks. Police suspect foul play due to evidence found inside her apartment.
The following Tuesday, they arrested James Solomon Parise, 25, in the parking lot of a Stratford restaurant. Police say the two knew each other.
Police allege she was murdered sometime between March 18 and March 19, a few days before her reported disappearance.
Insp. Kevin Thaler, police spokesperson, said Thursday it’s possible her body may also be found at the Waterloo Region landfill site on Erb Street West.
“We know the loveseat is in the landfill,” Thaler said. “Somebody’s taken this loveseat to the landfill.
“Is her body there? Sadly, that is a possibility.”
The loveseat may have been covered in a blanket or sheet.
Staff at the Region of Waterloo are using an excavator to help police with the search. The search began earlier this week and was expected to continue into the weekend.
Thaler said it isn’t a random search. Material is moved into the landfill site in a planned way, he said.
“There’s a specific area” that’s being searched, he said.
The search is expected to take some time.
“It was pretty clear this was going to be a large search — not an overnight search,” Thaler said.
This is the first time regional police have conducted a large-scale search of the landfill site in a homicide investigation, he said. Searches are not uncommon in other types of investigation.
Todd was once a well-known local pianist. She started her own business teaching piano, violin and accordion in Waterloo in 2003.
But it didn’t last. People who knew her recently said she didn’t work and may have had health problems and financial struggles.
Otto Kraut, the landlord at her Lorraine Avenue apartment, said other tenants complained that there were men constantly coming and going at her apartment. Todd told him she had a lot of male relatives.
Thaler wouldn’t say if there was any significance to this behaviour.
“I can’t comment. There are still witnesses to interview on this,” he said. “This investigation is extensive.”
Three slayings this year
There have been three murders in Waterloo in the first three months of this year. The other two are:
The torso of 24-year-old Kelsey Louise Felker was found Jan. 26 in a garbage bin behind an apartment building at 250 Frederick St., Kitchener.
On Jan. 31, Stephen Roy Johnson, 37, who lived in the apartment, was charged with first-degree murder and indignity to a human body in connection with Felker ’s slaying.
Additional remains were subsequently found in a wooded area off River Road in the Chicopee area of Kitchener and in an area near Woodside National Historic Site off Wellington Street.
The search is over unless new information comes to light, Thaler said. Police are not releasing the results of an autopsy.
Bryan Foy, 44, died in hospital the night of March 25 of injuries received in a beating outside a house on Allen Street East in Waterloo the night before. A father and son, Arthur O’Connell, 46, and his son, Patrick, 19, are charged with second-degree murder.
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