UNSOLVED: Was Hamilton grandmother's brutal slaying carried out by a woman?

 

Hamilton's Thelma Clapham was a proud mother of five and a grandmother.

According to her family in interviews they've done over the years, she was kind and generous and, at times, painfully honest.

Thelma had been living in subsidized housing on her own for a number of years at 226 Rebecca Street in downtown Hamilton.

At 79, Thelma lived a fairly active lifestyle, participating in many of the activities organized for the mostly senior tenants of the apartment building in which she lived.

On December 2, 2004 — a Thursday — Thelma was late for just such an outing. Friends became worried about her when she didn't show up for her usual bus trip to the grocery store.

When friends went to check on her, they found newspapers piled up outside Thelma's door. They alerted the building manager who called police.

Upon entering the apartment at approximately 11:30 a.m., Hamilton Police discovered Thelma's body on the floor in her bedroom.

Thelma, police say, died as a result of blunt force trauma. There was no sign of forced entry to the apartment located on the ninth floor of the building and some cash had been stolen but nothing else.

Police say the last time Thelma is confirmed to have been seen alive was Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2004.

Hamilton Police Service Major Crime Unit has been investigating the case in the years since Thelma's vicious murder.

The investigation, which has included police interviewing more than 200 people and forensic work, has painted part of the picture.

Police say they now have information that a woman may have been involved in this crime. Although no weapon has been recovered, investigators also believe they know what was used to kill the victim.

Anyone with information on this murder is asked to contact Detective Michelle Moore at 905-546-3843 and Detective Mike McNaughton at 905-546-4123 or call Hamilton Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).

There is a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible. Police say the identity of any person supplying information shall be treated as strictly confidential.

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