Barrie Police, OPP Launch Cold Case Campaign

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Joined: 3:26 PM - Jun 24, 2006

9:23 PM - Sep 12, 2017 #1

Published Wednesday, May 31, 2017 10:47AM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, May 31, 2017 7:07PM EDT

Daniel Lee Dobson was 21 when his mother was killed -- it still haunts him to this day.

April Dobson, 40, was shot and killed while sitting on a friend’s front porch on Oct. 14, 2005 in Barrie. Her murder is still unsolved.

 “Someone thought it was a good idea to fire a gun in her direction and my mother was hit,” he says. ”I feel confident that there are people in the Letitia Heights area in the City of Barrie that know what happened.  They know who the shooter is. They know who's involved.”

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Daniel Lee Dobson and Barbara Monaco are hoping for closure in the unsolved murder case of April Dobson. They can be seen in Burlington, Ont. on Wednesday, May 31, 2017. (Mike Arsalides/ CTV Barrie)

The OPP and Barrie police launched "Simcoe County Case Files" on May 31, 2017 in Barrie, Ont. in the hopes of solving cold cases. (Simcoe County Case Files/ Facebook)

The OPP and Barrie police are hoping a new social media campaign called “Simcoe County Case Files” can help bring closure to her family.
“I wake up a lot of nights from nightmares. I've dreamt about her. I wake up in a sweat, crying,” says Dobson’s mother Barbara Monaco. “It'll never go away. She was the only daughter I had.”

The campaign begins its focus on two unsolved murders and two missing persons cases in Barrie and the surrounding community.

Videos profiling the cases of Cindy Halliday, April Dobson, Grant Ayerst, and Norman Whalley will be featured on a dedicated Facebook page. A van wrapped with information on the cases will also be placed around the Greater Simcoe County area.

"Simcoe County Case Files can generate more information for ongoing investigations of unsolved murders and missing persons cases where foul play is strongly suspected,” says OPP Supt. Jim Smyth.

Halliday, 17, of Waverley was last seen hitchhiking near Midhurst on April 20, 1992. Her body was found in a wooded area in Springwater Township on June 17, 1992.

Ayerst, 21, and 36-year-old Whalley, both of British Columbia, were last seen leaving a hotel on Sept. 11, 1991 in Toronto. Foul play is suspected in their disappearance. Their bodies were never found.

“People from or who lived in Barrie and the Greater Simcoe County area at the time of these crimes may have information. We are now providing a great opportunity to bring that information forward."

A tip line has been set up in the hopes that anyone with information about any of these cases will call in. That number is 1-844-677-5030.

“It would give us closure. Not all the way, but it would give us some closure that the person is off the street and it doesn’t happen to anybody else,” says Monaco.

People can also email tips in or call Crime Stoppers.