Police searching for witness to weekend murder near High Park

Police are searching for the only adult to witness the murder of Ludlow Gillespie, a young father stabbed in the neck over the weekend in a car near High Park in front of his daughter.

According to witnesses, a child’s loud screams coudl be heard before the car swerved onto the curb as it drove north on Windermere Ave. near Lakeshore Blvd. Mr. Gillespie, 25, staggered out of the car, collapsed on the pavement and died of a stab wound to the neck.

Melissa Lewis, 24, is charged with second degree murder. She was Mr. Gillespie’s common-law partner. Travelling in the car with the couple was their six-year-old daughter and Ms. Lewis’s father, David Winn, 54.

Mr. Winn fled the scene with his granddaughter before he could be interviewed by police. The little girl was eventually brought to 11 Division by other family members, but Mr. Winn is still missing.

The Children’s Aid Society is currently investigating the circumstances of the incident and where the child will live in the future.

Homicide Detective Gary Giroux urges Mr. Winn to contact police for the sake of the investigation and the child’s future.

“He’s legally not obstructing justice. As a citizen, he has the right not to cooperate with investigators,” Det. Giroux said at a news conference Monday morning.

“This is different from traditional cases, but he is involved and he will be subpoenaed to a preliminary hearing and expected to answer questions truthfully. With regards to the CAS investigation, any ongoing and sustained co-operation from the family will bode well as to where the child remains.”

The only information police have at this time with regards to the nature of the dispute is based on what they learned from the little girl. The only details she provided were that she was screaming while “Mommy produced a knife and stabbed Daddy,” Det. Giroux said.

The child was extremely upset and crying during the police interview. Other family members were present.

There is a history of domestic conflicts between Mr. Gillespie and Ms. Lewis, who have been in a common-law relationship for the past seven years. Mr. Gillespie had a previous conviction for domestic violence and was prohibited from communicating or having contact with Ms. Lewis.

A post-mortem is now underway.

Mr. Gillespie’s death was Toronto’s 17th homicide of 2010.

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