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Murders of 2 friends go ‘cold’; Vancouver police look for tips to find killers, 34 years later

Lisa Gavin and Glenna ‘Dusty’ Sowan were killed just six weeks apart in 1988

The unsolved murders of two friends have officially gone cold, and the Vancouver police are renewing calls for any information into the pair of killings from 34 years ago.

Lisa Gavin and Glenna “Dusty” Sowan were killed just six weeks apart in 1988.

Police say that Gavin was last seen alive just before midnight on Aug. 12, 1988, when she left a friend’s apartment near Broadway and St. Catherine’s Street, in East Vancouver.

A sex-worker who had substance use disorder, Gavin told her friend she was going to work and would be back in an hour. She never returned, and her partially clothed body was discovered hours later in a lane near Knight Street and East 49th Avenue.

Twenty-five-year-old Sowan, also a sex worker, was last seen, on Sept. 29, 1988, inside an apartment near East 6th Avenue and St. George Street. Investigators say she’d been struggling with the loss of Gavin, and went out sometime between 1 to 5 p.m.

Her body was discovered the following day in some bushes near West 24th Avenue and Willow Street.

“No homicide case is ever closed until it’s solved, and we know there’s someone out there with information that can help solve these two murders,” says Sgt. Steve Addison. “Even the smallest bit of information could lead to a break in these cases and help us catch the killers.”

Investigators have pursued leads and re-examinded evidence with no success in finding the killers.

“But, even the smallest piece of evidence is all we need to crack these cases.”

The cases have been added to VPD’s Cold Cases website, which was created in 2014, and currently included profiles of 15 unsolved murders, dating back to 1958.


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About the Author: Ashley Wadhwani-Smith

I began my journalistic journey at Black Press Media as a community reporter in my hometown of Maple Ridge, B.C.
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