VANCOUVER EASTSIDE MISSING WOMEN
effort for missing women
By Maureen Kafer, Free Press Reporter,
The Free Press, Fernie, B.C.
August 3, 1999
Although the hope of finding any of the 31 missing Vancouver women alive is dwindling, the need of families and friends to know what happened to their loved ones remains.
After much prodding by families and increased media attention, the Vancouver Police and the Ministry of Attorney-General are taking larger steps to solve the Downtown Eastside disappearances.
A poster with photographs of 31 missing women, including Angela Jardine of Sparwood, was issued last week. The women’s names—all of whom were sex trade workers and drug dependent—birth dates, the date they were last seen and when they were reported missing is listed under their photographs.
A $100,000 reward for the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for unlawfully confining, kidnapping or murdering any one or more of the women listed in the reward poster by May 1, 2000, is being offered.
Angela’s mother, Deborah has been waging a battle with the police since her daughter disappeared November 1998. Deborah knew something was amiss when Angela didn’t call; she called regularly. But the police wouldn’t give any credence to the disappearance as was the case with the other missing women.
“Families are asking why something wasn’t done years ago when the women started disappearing,” says Deborah.
At least 25 of the women disappeared since 1995 and at least five since 1978, but those numbers will grow, says Deborah, as the investigation into other missing women’s files continues.
While the reward and the poster are a move in the right direction, Deborah has put her hopes on last Saturday’s broadcast of America’s Most Wanted. This case was highlighted on the program and was broadcast throughout Canada and the US.
“Hopefully someone somewhere saw something,” says Deborah. “There just has to be with that amount of people watching [the program].”
In her heart, Deborah still hopes to see her daughter again; each time the phone rings her heart leaps, especially with the passing of Angela’s 28th birthday on June 23. Realistically she doesn’t expect it to happen.
But that doesn’t mean she doesn’t want closure.
“It’s the unknown that’s the killer, that’s what drives us all nutty,” says Deborah. “You don’t know if they are dead, or alive and suffering. It’s unbearable at times.”
The Ministry is contributing 70 per cent of the reward and the other 30 per cent is coming from the City of Vancouver. With the prospect of such a large reward, everyone is hoping more information will start to come in.
The poster can be seen on www.city.vancouver.bc.ca/police/
Updated: August 21, 2016