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Police name suspect in Duncan murders

Apr 22 2012
Tyeshia Jones' mother Mary Jim pictured at a press conference after police arrested 24-year-old William Gordon Robert Elliott Friday afternoon and charged him with two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the deaths of Karrie Ann Stone, 42, and Tyeshia Jones, 18. 

Tyeshia Jones' mother Mary Jim pictured at a press conference after police arrested 24-year-old William Gordon Robert Elliott Friday afternoon and charged him with two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the deaths of Karrie Ann Stone, 42, and Tyeshia Jones, 18.

Photograph by: Darren Stone , timescolonist.com (April 2012)

The mothers of two slain Duncan women spoke to the public Saturday after learning about the arrest of the man suspected of killing their daughters.

Police arrested 24-year-old William Gordon Robert Elliott Friday afternoon and charged him with two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the deaths of Karrie Ann Stone, 42, and Tyeshia Jones, 18.

A crowd of friends, family and members of the community packed a room at the Duncan Fire Hall to hear the announcement and to listen to the grieving mothers, who spoke briefly with news media.

People were shocked to learn that Elliott was a member of the Cowichan band and known to Jones's family.

Her mother, Mary Jim, said her relatives suspected Elliott even before he was arrested. Aside from the pain both mothers feel, they want to forgive the man accused of killing their daughters.

"I want to one day forgive him for what he took from me and my family," Jim said.

The two vicious killings took place within seven months of each other. Stone's burned body was found on July 12, 2010, the same day she was reported missing by her mother, Bev Stone.

Jones was killed on Jan. 22, 2011, some time after she left a friend's party on Miller Road. Six days after she was reported missing, searchers found her naked body in a wooded area near the Shaker Church cemetery off Indian Road on Cowichan Tribes land.

The communities of Duncan and the Cowichan Tribes can begin healing, said the mothers.

"Karrie was the type of person. . .she just forgave everybody no matter what anybody did to her," said Stone. "And I'm sure she would want me - over time, at some point down the road - to forgive this man for what he has done to her, but that might be awhile coming."

Police would not reveal any details about their investigation or how they came to suspect and charge Elliott, who was scheduled for a bail hearing Saturday afternoon.

"I think, when we're talking about this specific case, it's very difficult for us at this time to get into that specific area, and I just ask that you appreciate why that's so important," RCMP Chief Supt. Wayne Rideout said.

RCMP said Elliott was not a suspect in any other killings, and that no other individuals were being sought in relation to the Jones and Stone cases.

Jim said Elliott was well-known to her family.

"My nephews grew up with him. They went to school with him, they know who his friends are," she said.

Cowichan Tribes Chief Harvey Alphonse said he knew Elliott, but hadn't seen him in years.

"I only knew him as a child. He was taken into foster care when he was young," Alphonse said.

Elliott was not known to her family, said Stone, who was relieved the investigation had not taken as long as in some cases.

"In my heart, I always hoped, but you hear so many cases where it takes years," she said. "I was so pleased that it was a much shorter time than what some parents had to go through."

dspalding@timescolonist.com

This story has been updated with corrected information.

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