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Guelph native identified as victim in Hamilton murder (2 photos)

Jenna Gazzola is daughter of longtime Guelph police officer and Catholic school board chairman Marino Gazzola

The woman murdered in a Hamilton apartment Monday has been identified as Guelph native Jenna Gazzola.

She is the daughter of respected longtime Guelph Police Service officer and current Wellington Catholic District School Board chair Marino Gazzola.

Jenna Gazzola, 34, is a graduate of St. James Catholic High School and was teaching in Hamilton.

Shane Shakeshaft, 27, who lived three doors down from Gazzola, made a brief appearance in a Hamilton courtroom Tuesday afternoon. He is charged with first degree murder.

Police said there is no relationship between the man in custody and the victim.

Hamilton Police report they were called to apartment 902 at 100 Forest Drive around 10:30 a.m. Monday morning to assist paramedics. Originally treated as a suspicious death, it was quickly deemed a homicide and an arrest made.

Police told local media that there were signs of forced entry and a struggle at the scene.

"It's certainly a difficult day for us," Guelph Police Chief Jeff DeRuyter said.

"We're in the business of dealing with people in tragic circumstances, but that doesn't mean it doesn't sometimes involve us. Sometimes it's within our family and our thoughts and prayers are with Marino and his family and the community at large.

"Marino is a public figure who has done a lot of wonderful things in the community ... we recognize how tragic this is and realize the need for privacy for the family as they deal with this as it unfolds," DeRuyter said.

Staff Sgt. Marino Gazzola has been with the Guelph Police Service for almost 40 years and is one of its longest serving members. He has served as trustee and chairman of the Wellington Catholic District School Board and as president of the Ontario Catholic School Trustees Association.

The police chief has worked with Marino Gazzola for 32 years.

"We're a medium-sized police service, so one of the opportunities we have is to know one another and interact with each other's families ... at difficult times we are there to support one another," De Ruyter said.


Tony Saxon

About the Author: Tony Saxon

Tony Saxon has had a rich and varied 30 year career as a journalist, an award winning correspondent, columnist, reporter, feature writer and photographer.
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