ORILLIA -- Driven out of St. Catharines, undoubtedly by the publicity of his presence and then by the recent laying of new charges, former Toronto private school teacher and convicted pedophile John Inglis moved here -- to a downmarket house seemingly out of context with his lifestyle.
Now, it seems, he is gone again.
The modest two-storey house, which sits on Colborne St. W. within sight of Soldiers' Memorial Hospital, is a far cry from the upscale home in the St. Catharines' borough of Port Dalhousie once owned by famed Canadian curler Marilyn Bodogh, but this is where the registered sex offender, as required by law, recently reported to authorities as being his official place of residence.
Two cars are in the driveway, neither registered to John Inglis. The house itself, last purchased in 1987 for $96,000, does not carry Inglis' name on the deed.
The last phone number in the book for the address, listed to yet another person, is no longer in service.
A knock at the door is answered by a tall, thin man with an sketchy grey beard and missing teeth.
"Is John Inglis home?" he is asked.
"You just missed him," the man replies. "He's on his way to B.C. He left about an hour ago."
I introduce myself.
"Is he on a holiday?" I then ask.
There will be no answer. The man simply glares, says goodbye, and quickly closes the door.
No welcome mat, and no comment.
Back in February, four charges that the 63-year-old Inglis breached a probation order to steer clear of children by visiting St. Catharines community centres were withdrawn, ostensibly because he was given two sets of rules -- the words used by a judge during Inglis' Toronto sentencing not precisely matching the words on his probation order.
The discrepancy -- and therefore the technicality -- was whether Inglis had to be directly supervised by another adult when around children or if other adults could merely be nearby, such as those attending the community centre.
"His understanding of what he was allowed to do or not allowed to do was in accordance with the judge's order," Niagara North Crown Attorney Wally Essert said following his decision to withdraw the charge against Inglis.
Inglis, a former teacher at Toronto's prestigious Crescent School for boys, as well as a teacher at St. Catharines' exclusive Ridley College, had pleaded guilty in April 2006 to three counts of sexual assault and one count of gross indecency --the pleas related to the historic sexual abuse of four teens in the 1970s and 1980s, one of whom was from St. Catharines.
Toronto police originally charged him with 16 sex-related offences involving nine boys, with most of the offences taking place at Inglis' former lakeside cottage near Bancroft when the boys, none older than 14, were his students.
Despite his sentence of two years' house arrest ending in April 2008, Inglis still remains on probation, an order which will not expire until the spring of 2010.
If not for a 3,000-word Maclean's article published in March 2007, written by me, Inglis might have totally escaped any public notoriety since no press was in the courtroom during his preliminary hearing when he suddenly changed his plea to guilty in response to a plea-bargain arrangement that would keep him out of jail.
Entitled "The Master Seducer," the piece won the 2007 national Beyond Borders award for print, and prompted the St. Catharines Standard to run an article alerting residents to Inglis' presence in their neighbourhood.
Without that story, John Inglis might have escaped infamy, and relegated the sordid truth to the past.
There was no such escape, however, for his victims -- not when their molestation at his hands left them dealing all these years later with the now-documented detritus of confused sexualities, psychological damage, marital upheaval, drug abuse and alcoholism.
At least one suicide can in fact be linked to the trauma inflicted by John Inglis, who, after quitting teaching, went on to considerable success as a financial planner and stock broker with RBC Dominion, with many of his clients reportedly being the upper-crust and wealthy parents of former students.
Here in Orillia, meanwhile, where the local OPP detachment was coy over Inglis' presence because of privacy laws, sources elsewhere stated that Inglis' trip to British Columbia was not related to a holiday.
He has, in fact, moved there -- presumably to be nearer to a brother who lives in New Westminster, and a sister who lives in Fernie, their names front-and-centre in Inglis' sentencing documents in 2006 as part of his support system.
More precisely, John Inglis has moved to Port Moody, the picturesque community at the end of Vancouver harbour.
According to Det. Ian Morrison of the Port Moody major crime unit, John Inglis, who must report his address, will be "welcomed" with intense scrutiny.
"We take convicted pedophiles moving into our community very seriously," says Morrison.
"He will be interviewed at length -- about his convictions, about his time in St. Catharines and his time in Orillia -- and he will have his picture taken.
"Every police officer on the force will be given a copy of that photograph," says Morrison.
"The scrutiny on him will be second to none.
"It will not be comfortable."
MARK.BONOKOSKI@SUNMEDIA.CA OR 416-947-2445