Scarborough digs deeper into Col. Russell Williams’ past

The search into Col. Russell Williams past has led to speculation of ties with serial killer Paul Bernardo. While police believe that the connection is coincidental, they are not leaving any Scarborough cold case unexamined.

Williams, a decorated colonel, was recently charged with two counts of first-degree murder, two counts of forcible confinement, two break and enter charges, and two counts of sexual assault.

He attended the University of Toronto Scarborough Campus (UTSC) and graduated in late ’80s with a degree in political science and economics.

This week, any Scarborough cold cases that coincide with Williams’ studies at the campus will be examined.

“Everything’s on the table,” said homicide Det. Doug Sansom. “There’s nothing that is specifically jumping out, but any reasonable cases will be looked at.”

The investigation into Williams’ past has reminded some Scarborough residents of other incidents that occurred when Williams was attending UTSC.

Plagued by a series of murders and rapes, Scarborough was terrorized from 1984 to 1990 by an unknown attacker, nicknamed the “Scarborough Rapist”.

Bernardo, the notorious serial killer and rapist, was apprehended in 1993 and convicted in 1995 for two first-degree murders and two sexual assaults. He is alleged to have committed many more.

Police have said they are re-examining the cases that overlap with when Williams attended UTSC.

The similarities in the studies of the two men have led to speculation.

The Toronto Sun reports through a number of sources that it is possible Williams and Bernardo knew each other.

The police have stated that there is no known connection between the two men.

Bernardo also attended UTSC and graduated in the late 80’s with a degree in commerce and economics.

After graduation, Williams began his 23-year career with the Canadian Forces.

He has been posted in a number of military bases in western, eastern and central Ontario, moving up the ranks until he was promoted colonel in Jan. 2009.

The OPP have begun to examine cold cases in the areas Williams is known to have lived.

In July 2009, Williams became the commanding officer at Canadian Forces Base Trenton. He is also commander of 8 Wing.

Since then, Williams has been interviewed by media for 8 Wing’s involvement in the Haiti relief effort.

Williams will appear in court, over video up-link, on Feb. 18.

About this article

By: Caitlin Stojanovski
Posted: Feb 18 2010 10:21 am
Filed under: News