Unsolved Murders: Alexandra Flanagan, Dismembered Remains Found In Two Spots (Barrie, Ontario, Canada; 2007)
33 Year Old Alexandra Flanagan's 2007 Murder Remains Unsolved.
The Search Begins...
News Clip About Alexandra; On Trial Canada
It was July 8th, 2007, when Alexandra Flanagan was last seen...
She was last seen waving goodbye to a male friend near Sunnidale Park, in Barrie, Ontario, Canada that Sunday evening between 8-9pm. That was the last known verifiable sighting of the 33 year-old hairdresser.
After her mother, Wendy Flanagan, had not heard from her daughter in 3 days, she drove from her home in Wasaga Beach to Alex's apartment to check on her. When she arrived that Wednesday, she was shocked to find that not only was her daughter not there, but she had clearly not been there for days. Alexandra's two cats had no food or water, and there was a pot of stew on the stove that had gone rancid. She made a phone call to the salon where Alex worked, and was told her daughter had not shown up for days.
Wendy was understandably quite worried about her daughter, with good reason. It wasn't likely Alexandra just took off; her ID and $900 in rent money was left behind in her apartment, and new washed laundry was folded neatly, just waiting to be put away. When Alexandra was reported missing, the Barrie Police Department did not seem to take it too seriously, treating it as though Alexandra left of her own accord, despite evidence otherwise. Many tips came in that reported sightings of Alexandra in Toronto, Ontario, located about an hour South of Barrie. None of these tips could be substantiated, but to the police, they seemed to help prove their theory that she just took off.
Her friends and family believed otherwise though, and pressured the police, who finally began searching for Alexandra a week after she had disappeared. They started putting up and distributing flyers, as well as doing a ground and aerial search of the area around Sunnidale Park, where she had last been seen. Three days later, on July 19th, friends and volunteers began a search of their own, combing through the wooded area in Sunnidale Park. Both searches are unsuccessful.
On July 23rd, police report that they are still searching, but they go on record as saying they "do not believe she has met with foul play". Police continue to receive tips that report sightings of her in the Toronto area.
Unfortunately, on October 5th, 2007, partial remains are found just off a walkway near Lackie's Bush in Barrie, about 7km away from where Alexandra was last seen. It is reported that initially a leg bone was found, and upon more searching, more bones were found about a km away, still in Lackie's Bush, including the skull. On October 9th, police confirm that the partial remains found belonged to Alexandra Flanagan according to dental records. In February of 2008, more of Alexandra's dismember body was discovered on a pedestrian/bike pathway east of Johnson's Beach, just outside of Barrie.
'Unsolved' News Story Clip on Alexandra's Still Unsolved Murder, 3 Years Later
Investigation, Evidence, and Suspects
Currently, there is no cause of death, no time of death, and no suspects. Many people have been disappointed with the way the police have behaved right from the time that Alexandra went missing, and believe they have dropped the ball with this investigation. I will discuss that in more detail further below. At this point, it's not clear what, if any, evidence the police have found. They still have not found all of Alexandra's remains. Police have maintained that they have 3-4 'persons of interest', who have not been ruled out as being involved in Alexandra's death, but no one has been named an official suspect.
In October of 2007, police did search a residence located on Rose St. in Barrie in relation to the Alexandra Flanagan case. It is not clear if anything they found during the search could be evidence concerning the murder of Alexandra Flanagan. We do know there were some things removed from the basement apartment, that they were sent for forensic testing. The police have said that they could not rule of the 'person of interest' who resided at that residence based on the search, but they obviously do not have enough evidence to charge him either. The police also executed a search warrant at the now-closed Faurecia automotive plant in Barrie in November of 2007, which was still in business at the time. It was issues in relation to an employee at the plant, who is still considered a 'person of interest'. Again, it is unclear if any potential evidence was found there.
The only pieces of information that we do know is that obviously, Alexandra Flanagan was dismembered. This is not only evident by the fact that her remains were found in different areas, but also due to the fact that her bones had evidence of saw marks. We also know that it is possible that her body was not disposed of immediately, and/or that she was not killed immediately; though her remains were decomposed, many people claim that it is impossible, given where the remains in Lackie's Bush were found, that she would not have been discovered earlier if her body had been there from the time of her disappearance, as many people walk their dogs in that area on a regular basis.
The police say that at this point, they have hit a dead end (so to speak), and they need some new information to be able to proceed any further with the investigation.
Poll: Did the Police Screw Up?
Do you believe the Barrie police properly did their job when Alexandra went missing, or did they screw up the investigation by not taking it seriously enough?
Did The Police Fail Alexandra?
Friends, family, and other citizens in the city of Barrie have been extremely upset at home Alexandra Flanagan's case has been handled. People are angry that the Police did not seem to take her disappearance seriously at first, and think more should have been done by the police as soon as she went missing.
The police maintain that they followed all proper protocol, and treated Alexandra's case as they would any other. They repeatedly have responded to questioning about this with the answer that adults are free to come and go as they please, and that lots of people just decide to just up and walk away from their lives. They maintain that since there was nothing suspicious reported about Alexandra's disappearance - like a witness who saw her being forced into a car, or evidence her apartment had been broken into - that they had no reason to suspect any kind of foul play, and that protocol is to assume the person left of their own accord.
Many people do not buy that story. The fact that she had left behind hundreds of dollars, her ID, her pets, and all of her personal possessions should have been reason enough to rule out her running away from her life or leaving on her own. Alexandra had also not accessed her bank account, nor was there any cellphone activity since she had went missing. Friends and family pleaded with police, insisting Alexandra was settled, and happy with her life, and had no reason to leave. To no avail; the police publicly announced they did not feel there was any evidence of foul play. In fact, if her friends and family had not gotten frustrated with the lack of effort by police, and taken their pleas and disgruntlement to the media, the police might have been slower to take any action still.
IF YOU HAVE ANY INFORMATION ABOUT THE MURDER OF ALEXANDRA FLANAGAN...
No matter how inconsequential or small you believe that information to be, please contact the Barrie Police Service, Major Crime Unit, at 705-725-7025 ext.2160, contact: Detective Norman Meech, or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
Remember, she was last seen on Sunday, July 8th, 2007 in the evening sometime between 8pm and 9pm, saying goodbye to a male friend near Sunnidale Park. She was supposed to be heading home. She would most likely have been heading South on Sunnidale Road, exiting the park, and then heading towards Wellington St. West. If you remember seeing anyone in the area around that time, or remember seeing her with someone, or anything suspicious please contact the Barrie Police Department or Crime Stoppers at immediately.