TORONTO – A star minor hockey player and his mother were found dead in a home east of Toronto on Wednesday, hours before police arrested a man in connection with what they described as a double homicide.
However, Durham Region police said later that a 13-year-old girl who was also found in the home suffering critical injuries later died in hospital.
Const. George Tudos said a man was arrested in Oshawa, Ont., after officers found the bodies the 39-year-old woman and her 15-year-old son in a home in nearby Ajax.
Police have not released any names, but said the 29-year-old suspect was believed to have been in a romantic relationship with the woman. Tudos said the man did not live in the home and was not the father of the two children.
Meanwhile, the president of a Toronto minor hockey organization identified the 15-year-old in the incident as Roy Pejcinovski, a star goalie with the major bantam Don Mills Flyers.
Peter MacInnis said Pejcinovski’s death is a “tremendous loss” for the team, which is in the city finals to qualify to represent the Greater Toronto Area for the provincial championship.
“It’s tough for the players on the team, the parents, the staff — he was a great kid,” MacInnis said. “And his buddies on the team are 14 or 15, how do you deal with that?”
Our neighbourhood is a quiet neighbourhood. But I guess it’s always quiet until something happens, right?
MacInnis said the teen was a top player, who had promising prospects in next year’s Ontario Hockey League draft.
“He was an elite athlete, he was absolutely the team’s No. 1 goalie and he has been for several years,” he said, adding that grief counsellors were brought in at Wednesday night’s practice to break the news to Pejcinovski’s teammates.
MacInnis said the Flyers were scheduled to play Friday, but the team has asked the league to postpone the game as players cope with the loss of their goalie.
“There are a whole lot of mixed emotions,” he said. “If it happened in the summer, it would still be a tragedy, but the fact that the team is in the high part of the season, it’s very difficult.”
The team plans to do something in Pejcinovski’s honour, MacInnis said, but details will be discussed later.
Police said the suspect was arrested without incident and is expected make a court appearance Thursday morning, where he will likely be charged with three counts of second-degree murder.
Investigators said police were called to the Ajax home shortly before noon Wednesday after a woman stopped by to check on her friend.
They said a man answered the door, wouldn’t let the woman in and then left the area in a vehicle that was later found abandoned.
Tudos said he could not provide details on the deaths, but added that a post-mortem is expected Thursday or Friday.
“Right now we are not going to be speaking to any causes of death, any trauma or anything like that to the victims,” he said.
He said the woman had another daughter “who was found safe and sound” and was not at the house at the time of the incident.
Marion Kervick, who lives two doors down from the home, said a mother and her three children lived there.
“Our neighbourhood is a quiet neighbourhood,” she said. “But I guess it’s always quiet until something happens, right?”