Fire that killed Hamil­ton cou­ple was mur­der, in­ves­ti­ga­tors say

Their last mo­ments were ‘sheer ter­ror’

Toronto Sun - - NEWS - JENNY YUEN

A Hamil­ton cou­ple “would have ex­pe­ri­enced sheer ter­ror” when a fire was de­lib­er­ately set in their home while they slept, claim­ing their lives, po­lice say.

Hamil­ton Po­lice said Fri­day they be­lieve the cou­ple were tar­geted in Mon­day’s blaze, ini­tially deemed sus­pi­cious, and suf­fered “hor­rific in­juries.” They say the fire be­gan in a bed­room in the sin­gle-storey home and quickly spread.

Carla Ruther­ford, 64, died on the way to the hospi­tal af­ter fire­fight­ers pulled her out of the burn­ing home on Green­ing Court, in the city’s Dun­das area, around 3:45 a.m. Mon­day.

Al­lan Ruther­ford, 65, was able to es­cape and knock on a neigh­bour’s door for help, po­lice say. He was found on the lawn and rushed to hospi­tal in crit­i­cal con­di­tion, but died that even­ing.

An in­ves­ti­ga­tion with the On­tario Fire Mar­shal of­fice deter­mined the fire was ar­son and the cou­ple were vic­tims of a homi­cide.

“These were in­no­cent, sleep­ing vic­tims who would have ex­pe­ri­enced sheer ter­ror,” Det. Sgt. Steve Berez­iuk said. “They suf­fered hor­rific in­juries that led to their deaths.”

Berez­iuk said both vic­tims were “tremen­dous peo­ple.”

“That is what adds to the tragedy of this event,” he told a press con­fer­ence. The cou­ple had been mar­ried about 11 years.

Po­lice say that they be­lieve the mur­ders are an iso­lated in­ci­dent. They did not pro­vide a mo­tive or sus­pects.

Any­one with in­for­ma­tion is asked to call po­lice at 905546-3836 or Crime Stop­pers.


Carla and Allen Ruther­ford were killed in a fire in Hamil­ton’s Dun­das Mon­day. Po­lice are now call­ing their deaths a dou­ble homi­cide.

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