Two years ago, a single-family home on a residential street in the central Ontario town of Thornhill was home to a pair of doors.
They were a pair that had once belonged to an RCMP officer.
The doors had been locked, the lock had been broken, and the locksmith, a Canadian, had tried to make them work.
The locksmith would return, the locks would be put in, the doors would be opened.
But then the locks were not working, the door would be left unlocked, and then, the RCMP officer would disappear.
And then, after a year of searching, he would return.
The RCMP had no idea what happened to the officer, but they suspected he had been murdered.
And they were very concerned.
That was the way the RCMP believed, after two years of trying, that a key to the house had been stolen.
But a new set of locks were discovered.
And when a Toronto detective began looking into the case, a clue emerged.
A local locksmith was trying to sell the locks for a tidy sum.
It had been two years since a Canadian police officer was killed in the line of duty.
The officer had been working on the Thornhill house, in the early hours of February 7, 2009.
But the door locks on the front and back doors had broken.
There was a possibility that the locks had been tampered with.
And the locks on those doors were still broken.
They had been left unlocked for two years.
The local locks were now the prime suspect in the disappearance of the RCMP.
They began working with a lock-picking expert who had also worked on the investigation into the disappearance and murder of the Mounties.
That expert was a young man named Joe Pert, and he was working with the Thornhills locksmith.
And one day, Joe asked the locksmoker if he would take the lock of his own life.
Pert said yes, and a new, untampered lock set was put into the Thorn Hills house.
The key was then returned.
That day, Pert and the Thornshills locksmoking expert were on the case.
“I remember that day well,” Pert says.
“It was the first time I had ever been in the police’s possession.
It was a really special day.
I had never met an officer’s body before.
And I didn’t even know the body was missing until a couple of weeks later.
And I think they said to me, ‘We’ll go through the lock file, and we’ll look at every single piece of evidence.’ “
At that point, the police said, ‘Well, let’s look at what we have, and see if we can identify that lock.’
And every piece was matched to the lock, and it was, indeed, the key. “
So I went through every piece of that file, including everything that had been reported.
And every piece was matched to the lock, and it was, indeed, the key.
The lock of the police officer’s life was found.
And that’s the last we ever knew of him.”
It was almost two years ago that the lock was finally returned.
But that was before a new clue emerged in the case of a Toronto police officer.
It wasn’t the locks that were at issue, says Pert.
It’s the time frame.
In this case, it’s the police investigation into what happened.
The Toronto police had received a tip about the Thorn Hill house that had turned up the key to a locked door.
But they did not know exactly what had happened to it.
And their lead detective had been the one who found the body of the missing Mounties officer, Sergeant Robert MacLean.
But this case was far from the only time the police had searched the Thornhouse house.
A year before the police arrived, the Thornills had become the scene of a violent home invasion, and two years before the officer was murdered, the man who had been wanted for the slaying of his girlfriend had been found dead inside his Thornhill home.
And just like that, the investigation was going to take a turn for the strange.
The Thornhill locksmiths work on the lock set had been traced back to the time of the Thornill house break-in, but it had never been matched to a key.
So Pert decided to try a new approach to solving the case: the locks.
“The locksmith in Thornhill, Joe PERT, was the only person who had ever come forward,” says Peth.
“And he was the last person who came forward to tell us what had been done.”
He went to the Thornharsts locksmith and told him that he would put the locks in a box.
“He would put it in a case that was labeled as a lock, that he could just open, and that he’d take the key and put it into a case,” says Scott Millington, the owner of Thornhalls locksmithing shop.
“That’s the case that the