Deaths of Harrow, Ont., mother, children were case of intimate partner violence, initial investigation finds

Carly Walsh of Harrow with her children Hunter, 8, and Madison, 13, in an image shared by the community.
From left: Carly Walsh, 41, and her children, Hunter, 8, and Madison, 13, are pictured. Dozens came to mourn them at a funeral on Tuesday in Windsor. (Camoes Portuguese Club of Harrow/Facebook)

WARNING: This story contains discussion of intimate partner violence and suicide.

Three family members in Harrow, Ont., south of Windsor, died of gunshot wounds in June, the Ontario Provincial Police announced on Saturday.

Carly Walsh, 41, and her children, Madison, 13, and Hunter, 8 — who were found dead in their home on June 20 — died of gunshots wounds, OPP Sgt. Ed Sanchez said in a video posted to OPP West Region's social media accounts.

Sanchez also said that Steve Walsh, Carly's husband and the children's father, who was also found in the home, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

"The initial investigation has determined that this is a case of intimate partner violence," he said. "Intimate partner violence is a serious public problem in Ontario."

The incident has had a "huge impact" on Harrow because it is a small, tight-knit community where everybody knows everybody, Essex Mayor Sherry Bondy previously told CBC News.

Bondy said Carly Walsh was very involved in the community, working local jobs, coaching soccer and working at the youth centre.

"We have such a small community and everything's connected. Just about every area of the town is impacted."

Dozens of people came to mourn Carly, Madison and Hunter at a funeral on Tuesday in Windsor.

An aerial view shows a home in Harrow, Ont. The Ontario Provincial Police said Saturday that the four people found dead in the home in June died of gunshot wounds. (Ken Amlin/CBC)
An aerial view shows a home in Harrow, Ont. The Ontario Provincial Police said Saturday that the four people found dead in the home in June died of gunshot wounds. (Ken Amlin/CBC)

For anyone affected by family or intimate partner violence, there is support available through crisis lines and local support services. If you're in immediate danger or fear for your safety or that of others around you, please call 911.


If you or someone you know is struggling, here's where to get help:

  • Those in the Windsor-Essex area of Ontario can also call Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare's 24-hour crisis line: 519-973-4435.