News / Toronto

Bruce McArthur was barred from Gay Village as part of sentence for 2001 assault

Accused killer was also prohibited from spending time with male prostitutes after assaulting a man with metal pipe almost 15 years ago.

Bruce McArthur was barred from an area that included Toronto's Gay Village and from spending time with male prostitutes as part of the conditional sentence he received for assaulting a man with a metal pipe almost 15 years ago.

THE CANADIAN PRESS

Bruce McArthur was barred from an area that included Toronto's Gay Village and from spending time with male prostitutes as part of the conditional sentence he received for assaulting a man with a metal pipe almost 15 years ago.

Bruce McArthur was barred from an area that included the city’s Gay Village and prohibited from spending time with male prostitutes as part of the conditional sentence he received for assaulting a man with a metal pipe almost 15 years ago.

McArthur, 66, is now facing charges of first degree murder in the disappearances of Andrew Kinsman and Selim Esen, both gay men, from the Church and Wellesley area last year. Police believe there are more victims.

McArthur was previously convicted of assault with a weapon and assault causing bodily harm for an attack that took place on Oct. 31, 2001, court documents show.

On April 11, 2003, McArthur received a conditional sentence of two years less a day plus three years’ probation.

Presented with the list of conditions attached to the sentence, a long-time criminal defence lawyer said the judge was likely concerned McArthur could be a danger to all male prostitutes.

“They’re probably just not protecting the victim here, if the victim was a male prostitute, they’re protecting all male prostitutes,” said Liam O’Connor, a Toronto lawyer who is not connected to the case.

As part of McArthur’s sentence, except for work or medical appointments, he was ordered to stay away from the area between University Ave. to the west, Bloor St. to the north, Sherbourne St. to the east and College/Carlton to the south — an area that includes Toronto’s Gay Village.

It’s not clear if the conditions lasted after two years.

O’Connor said while conditions restricting a person from being in certain areas do happen, they are “uncommon.”

“The only place I see it regularly is in drug convictions where you’re asked to stay out of a particular notorious narcotics dealing area,” he said.

“An educated guess then about that, is the area they’ve asked him to stay out of is an area where there was probably high prostitution,” O’Connor said.

The order was likely put in place to protect male prostitutes, he added.

McArthur was also ordered to stay at least 10 metres away from 484 Church St., the City Park Co-operative Apartments, or any address known to be the home or workplace of the victim.

He was further ordered to go to counselling, including anger management. He was not allowed to have any firearms, cross-bows, ammunition or explosives for 10 years, and was to have a sample of DNA taken and added to a database.

Reached by phone Wednesday, former Toronto police Det. Peter Harmsen, who is listed in the court documents, said he could not recall the arrest, and had not yet made the connection that he’d worked on a case involving McArthur.

“I think it’s a sad case,” Harmsen said of the most recent charges against McArthur.

Police have been investigating McArthur since at least September, when they seized the maroon Dodge Caravan he sold to an auto parts shop just outside of Oshawa.

McArthur was arrested and charged with two counts of first-degree murder on Jan. 18 in the disappearances of Kinsman, 49, and Esen, 44.

Esen was last seen in the area of Yonge and Bloor Sts. on April 14, 2017. Police say he was familiar with the Church and Wellesley area.

Less than two months later, Kinsman, who was also known in the Church and Wellesley community, disappeared. He was last seen June 26 at 71 Winchester St. near Carlton and Parliament Sts.

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