Nov 12, 2010

New DNA Evidence Provides Fresh leads for Investigators

LONDON, ON, Nov. 12 /CNW/ - Members of the Essex County Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) and the Western Region Unsolved Homicide Investigation Team (UHIT), led by Acting-Detective Inspector Chris AVERY of the OPP Criminal Investigation Branch hosted a media conference today at the Lakeshore Detachment of the OPP in relation to the homicide investigation of Russell Floyd "Rocky" COOK who was 29-years-old at the time of his murder in 1977. 

COOK was last seen leaving the Swingland Hotel in Lakeshore Ontario around 10:30 p.m. on Thursday December 22, 1977 with some associates. That was the last time he was seen alive.  His remains were found in a ditch along Concession 4-5 in Maidstone Township just south of County Road 46 at 9:10 a.m. on December 23, 2007. COOK died from a single gunshot wound to the chest. The murder which happened two days before Christmas left his then 7-year-old daughter fatherless. 

A news conference held in 2007 by the OPP revealed robbery as the motive for the crime. The motive remains undisputed by investigators. Today Acting-Detective Inspector AVERY announced that they now have located DNA evidence from the crime scene following a re-examination of the evidence. AVERY is confident that physical  and DNA forensic evidence from the scene, as well as statements gathered locally, provincially and from across North America will move the investigation forward substantially. 

The $50,000 reward remains for anyone who contacts police and provides information leading to the arrest of the person responsible for this crime.  Police are appealing to anyone with information to contact them at 1-888-310-1122.  Should you wish to remain anonymous, you may call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222 TIPS (8477) where you may be eligible to receive a cash reward up to $2,000.

For further information:

Contact: PC Karen Gignac-Trudell
Phone:  1-888-795-5687