Police suspect murder-suicide in North Gower deaths

Ottawa police have confirmed the same gun was used to kill father and son in what they believe was a murder-suicide.
The North Gower farm where police discovered the bodies of a father and son late Tuesday evening.

Two men found dead in a home in the south Ottawa community of North Gower were killed by the same gun in what police say was a murder-suicide. 

At 10:20 p.m. Tuesday night, Peter Thomasing, a resident in the 3000 block of Pierce Road, made a 911 call. 

When a police tactical team and paramedics arrived at the rural property, about 40 minutes from downtown Ottawa, and entered the home, they found two men dead — Thomasing, 39, and his 75-year-old father, James Thomasing. 

Neighbour Linda Davidson says the deaths are going to hit the rural community hard.

According to James Thomasing's ex-wife Joyce, Peter had been caring for his ailing father since 2003, after James suffered a stroke. She referred to her son as a wonderful boy, her former husband as a wonderful man and said that Peter didn't want to put his dad in a home.

Neighbour Jim Ross said he didn't hear commotion from the property next door and learned of the situation from police who knocked on his door late Tuesday evening.

"It’s a bit of a shock to everyone around here, nobody seen something like that coming," said Ross. "They were very nice neighbours, they kept to themselves."

Linda Davidson, who's lived in North Gower since the 1960s, said the Thomasings were well-liked in the community. 

"He was kind of laid back and quiet but he’d give you the shirt off his back," Davidson said of the father. "He was just a really nice guy."

The province’s Special Investigations Unit will investigate the case, as police were en route to the scene when the deaths occurred. The SIU is called to investigate when police are in contact with someone who has been seriously injured, dies or alleges sexual assault.

Ottawa police said they've responded to three calls for service at the home since 2005, though they would not say when nor what the calls were about.

James Thomasing was a retired school teacher and his adult son worked as a mechanical engineer.