(CNN) — The deaths of Canadian billionaires Barry and Honey Sherman were a mystery from the start.
A real estate agent tours a couple’s mansion in Toronto on Dec. 15, 2017. At noon He found their fully clothed bodies in an indoor swimming pool in the basement. They had belts around their necks and were half seated on their sides Pool railing will remain closed, according to police.
Barry Sherman is 75; His wife Honey is 70 years old. None of his friends or business associates had heard from him in about two days, and there was no sign the apartment door had been forced, the agency said. policeman.
The story made headlines far beyond his thriving Toronto community. The police called death Suspicious And theories arose about who might have wanted to kill the founder of Canadian generic drug company Apotex and his philanthropist wife, one of Canada’s wealthiest couples.
Researchers worked to connect the dots. But even after five years no one has been arrested. On the anniversary of the incident this week, the Shermans’ son has offered an additional US$25 million for information leading to the identification of the person or persons responsible. The reward is now $35 million.
“This week marks the fifth anniversary since my parents were murdered in their home. From that moment on, every day was a nightmare. I am overwhelmed with grief, loss and sadness, and these feelings are getting worse,” Jonathan Sherman said in a statement. Canada’s CBC NewsAnnouncing the reward amount.
“Until those responsible for this heinous act are brought to justice, we cannot let go of what happened,” he added. “I hope the day will come when I pay that money because I can finally heal.”
Initially, it was presumed to be suicide
From the beginning, the case baffled investigators and amateur detectives alike. A few days after the bodies were found, an autopsy revealed the couple had died of “neck strangulation” or strangulation. Police said at the time that the investigation was still in its early stages and the deaths were not being treated as homicides.
“The pattern is indeterminate and only a double-suicide, murder/suicide or double-homicide has been ruled out,” Detective Sergeant Susan Gomez said.
The importance of the victims made the case high from the start.
Barry Sherman founded Apotex in 1974 and grew it into a global pharmaceutical company that has donated more than $50 million, according to its website. At the time of Sherman’s death, Forbes estimated his worth at $3 billion.
The Shermans’ wealth, large investments, and philanthropic work meant the couple often crossed paths with Canada’s business and political elite.
His funeral was attended by thousands, including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne.
At the service, an emotional Jonathan Sherman took to the stage with his three sisters, fueling speculation of his parents’ suicide.
“Our parents never left anyone alone. They were taken from us,” she said through tears, adding that the family was comforted by the thought of the Shermans together in rehab. “They were like a lock and a key, each useless in its own right. But together they opened the world for you, for us, and for many others,” he said.
The couple’s children hired their own forensic team and private investigators, leading to the belief that the police investigation was inconsistent.
Toronto police later said investigators never determined whether the case was a murder or suicide, and that it was a misunderstanding. Authorities said they were trying to reassure the public that this was not a home invasion or a violent robbery.
The police later concluded that someone had killed them.
Six weeks after the bodies were found, Toronto police, reviewing the evidence, announced that the couple were the victims of a homicide and that they were the targets of an attack. Investigators said the additional time required to search the Sherman mansion and related issues delayed establishing a manner of death.
“Legal issues were challenging based on the litigious nature of Barry Sherman’s businesses, particularly the search and seizure of electronics and the search of Barry Sherman’s workplace at Apotex,” Gomez said in January 2018.
“Two residential properties belonging to the Shermans were raided. Sherman’s main residence was a large three-story family home. “Six weeks of searching, forensic examination and seizure of evidence is justified,” he clarified.
According to CNN affiliate CBC, police indicated there may have been financial motives for the double murder. A Toronto police spokeswoman declined to comment on the report.
Over the years, Barry Sherman has sued dozens of people, including one he claims was defrauded of $150,000 on the last day he was found alive, the CBC reported. He is known for lending money to friends and family and investing in other businesses.
Gomez declined to provide details about what evidence was found in the search of the home or whether any burglaries were reported. He said there were no suspects, but police spoke to several people who had access to the home.
CBC reports that the Sherman mansion does not have security cameras. With no signs of forced entry, someone may have had a key, had access to a lock box containing the keys, or the couple knew, Gomez said.
He urged any witnesses to come forward to assist the investigation. “We have a significant amount of footage of people in the neighborhood,” he said.
Weeks turned into months with no new witnesses. Even investigators admitted that the family was getting impatient with the lack of information.
“For them, like other families who have suffered such a sudden and profound loss, it is difficult to balance their frustration with us and their patience with our investigation,” Gomez said in 2018.
In 2021, the police asked for help in identifying a suspect
After years of silence, police made the startling announcement on the fourth anniversary of the couple’s death last year.
A man caught on security video has shared a video of the couple walking down a snow-covered sidewalk in the North York neighborhood where they lived. The police termed the person as a suspect and sought the public’s help in identifying him.
Police said that the suspect in the said video had his head covered and was between 1.70 and 1.80 meters tall. He added that he did not know whether it was male or female and could not determine their age, weight or skin color.
The suspect’s unusual gait, which seemed to raise his right heel while walking, attracted attention.
“Through our investigation, we have not been able to determine what this individual’s purpose was in the neighborhood. The timing of this individual’s appearance is consistent with the time we believe the murders occurred. Based on this evidence, we are classifying this individual as a suspect,” Detective Sergeant Brandon Price said at a news conference.
A “comprehensive video tour” nearby revealed another holdup of the suspect, and when police believe the murders took place, the man was near the Sherman home and had been there for a short time, Price said.
They urged the man to appear before a judge, but without success.
The Sherman children say the lack of answers only adds to their pain
Five years after the murders, there have been no major new developments. True crime podcasts tried to unravel the intrigue surrounding the couple’s death.
The Shermans’ children say the years leading up to the murders were a nightmare.
The lack of answers only adds to the pain, said his daughter, Alex Krawczyk.
“So far they have not received justice and no opportunity to bring closure to me and my family,” he said in a statement. Notice This week. “My heart is broken. My loss is immeasurable. My children have lost their grandparents. We miss their guidance, love and wisdom.”
As a country singer, Krawczyk released an album this year that he described as an effort to Process your pain and recover after the death of their parents.
In a statement to the CBC, her brother Jonathan Sherman extended the same sentiment, saying the family will not have closure until the killer is brought to justice. Her parents’ loss extends beyond the family to the many whose lives they touched, she said. The Shermans were a large part of the local Jewish community, and engaged in a great deal of philanthropic and advocacy work.
“Nothing will replace your incredible generosity and your social impact,” he told the CBC. “My parents deserve to enjoy the fruits of their labor, as any grandparent deserves to spend their twilight years with their family… I am forever saddened by what happened to them,” he added.
Reminding people of the $35 million reward, the brothers urged anyone with information to contact the Toronto Police Service. CNN has reached out to the family for comment.
Toronto Police Service spokeswoman Caroline de Clote declined to comment on a possible motive or the development of the case.
“This is still an active and ongoing investigation,” he said. “The Toronto Police Service is committed to solving this case and bringing closure to the family and friends of Barry and Honey Sherman.”