Edmonton police charge Ontario man with rape in 1981 assault on woman

A 66-year-old Ontario man is facing rape and robbery charges in a 1981 Edmonton sexual assault after police investigators used the National DNA Data Bank to create a genetic profile of their suspect.

John Edward Beausoleil is charged under the 1981 Criminal Code of Canada, the Edmonton Police Service said in a news release Wednesday.

“Despite our best efforts, historical files can be difficult to solve,” Staff Sgt. Ryan Tebb with the EPS Historical Crimes Section said in the release.

“We are pleased that our review of this particular investigation was successful and today’s technology was able to assist us with an arrest.”

On Friday, Sept. 18, 1981, police responded to a report of a sexual assault in the area of Lancaster Terrace and 156th Avenue.

It was reported that around 3:30 a.m., a 36-year-old woman was getting out of her vehicle in a parkade when she was accosted and sexually assaulted by a man. The man, who wasn’t known to the woman, took her purse and fled.

Investigators at the time were unable to identify or find a suspect.

Then in October 2018, investigators with the EPs Historical Crimes section re-evaluated the file against modern investigative techniques, police said.

A DNA profile of the suspect was developed and was matched to Beausoleil using the DNA data bank.

Beausoleil, who was 27 years old at the time of the assault, was arrested Feb. 26 at his home in Orillia, Ont., with the help of Ontario Provincial Police.

He has since been transported to Edmonton.

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