The Disturbing Way Killer Adam Strong's Victims Were Found

Getting away with murder used to be a lot easier. Fingerprints have only been used in criminal investigations for about a century (per Saint Louis Magazine), and solving cold cases with DNA wasn't a reality until four decades ago (via Time Magazine). In theory, carefully cleaning up the crime scene and avoiding eyewitnesses allowed many terrifying crimes to go unsolved.

In the modern world, it becomes much more difficult to completely cover your tracks. Blood, hair, semen, skin cells, and even clothing fibers have been used to convict perpetrators ranging from arsonists to rapists to hit-and-run drivers. Forensic science has made it much easier to narrow down and identify the killers that walk among us using microscopic strands of DNA that offenders often leave behind. Shows like "Forensics Files" and "Cold Case Files" serve as cautionary tales to would-be criminals, letting them know that the proper application of science can net just about any criminal, no matter how slick they think they are.

Murders are solved in a lot of interesting ways, both with and without forensic evidence. One case from Oshawa, Ontario ultimately used DNA to identify the remains of two victims, but only broke when a service call to the home led two suspicious plumbers to make a gruesome discovery. The story behind Canadian killer Adam Strong's capture and conviction might be the first time someone was caught for murder because of what they flushed down their toilet.

Be careful what you flush!

The family of 19-year-old Kandis Fitzpatrick first reported the itinerant teen missing to police in 2010 after they hadn't heard from her in over a year (via The Toronto Sun). Police had few leads as the case was already cold by the time the report was made. Nearly a decade later, 18-year-old Rori Hache was reported missing by her family in Oshawa. The torso of the pregnant teen's body was found several weeks later in Oshawa Harbor by fishermen.

Months later, police received an interesting phone call from two plumbers in Oshawa. The workers had responded to a call at a local apartment building about a clogged drain. After working on the pipes, they pulled a long piece of what appeared to be flesh from the plumbing. Not knowing exactly what it was, the plumbers phoned the police to report it. 

On December 29, 2017, officer Kevin Park met the plumbers outside of the apartment building on McMillan Drive around 8 p.m. (per The Toronto Sun). Park reported to the news outlet that he knocked on the door of tenant Adam Strong and asked him one pivotal question — what had Strong been flushing down his toilet?

Strong immediately caved. "OK, you got me, the gig's up, it's a body," Strong said. "If you want to recover the rest of her, it's in my freezer." Sure enough, when investigators opened the door to a freezer in Strong's bedroom, they found the rest of Hache's body.

DNA testing linked Adam Strong to a decade-old cold case

Proving the case against Adam Strong for Rori Hache's murder wasn't a difficult task. The flesh pulled from the pipes by the plumbers, the body parts in the freezer, and his admission that he had those parts stowed away were pretty damning pieces of evidence. Additionally, a forensic investigation showed that Hache's blood was spattered on the walls of Sharp's bedroom and the ceiling (via The Toronto Sun).

The police also recovered a knife they believed was used to flay the flesh off of Hache. When they had DNA testing performed on it, they discovered that the knife in question also contained the DNA of Kandis Fitzpatrick. Further testing showed that blood from Fitzpatrick, who had been missing for almost 10 years, could be found in Strong's freezer and on the walls of his apartment.

After a trial, the Crown found Strong guilty of one count of first-degree murder for the death of Hache and one count of manslaughter for the death of Fitzpatrick. He was remanded into the custody of the penal system and sentenced to life imprisonment plus 18 years for those respective offenses, to be served concurrently (per CBC News). Strong has no chance of being eligible for parole until he's completed 25 years of imprisonment.