Who killed Dale Sams? 25 years later, Barrie Police continue to seek answers

Sams was struck by a vehicle on Big Bay Point Road

When Dale Sams was struck and killed by a vehicle on Saturday, April 26, 1997, in the eastbound lane of Big Bay Point Road in Barrie, at the time there were gravel shoulders, no street lights, the road was two lanes between what is now Prince William Way and Sandringham Drive, and the post speed limit was 80 km/h an hour.

On Tuesday, Barrie Police issued a public appeal for anyone with information about the death of the 18-year-old to come forward.

Sams was struck sometime between 3:30 and 4:30 a.m. and was found by another motorist.

Barrie Police
Big Bay Point Road in 1997

“We believe strongly that somebody out there has the information that can help us solve it,” says police spokesperson Peter Leon.

Following the crash, police say evidence was sent to the Centre of Forensic Sciences in Toronto for further analysis. Police also conducted a line search of Big Bay Point Road and conducted countless interviews that included the people who first came across Sams lifeless body and with those he had gathered with earlier in the evening.

Five days after the collision at a news conference, Sams sister Dawn made a plea for the driver to surrender or for anyone with information to contact police.

Leon says a recent tip resulted in the Barrie Police Service Traffic Investigative Team taking another look at the case.

“Things have changed a lot in policing over the past 25 years and we have resources and technology that’s available to use by inputting all the data and information we have to hopefully solve the mystery as to who killed Dale Sams.”

Leon says two of the investigators assigned to this case are collision reconstructionists, and they’re the ones who go to a scene and literally put the pieces back together again.

“If you are the driver who is responsible for the death of Dale Sams, you have likely spent the past 25 years looking over your shoulder and keeping this secret to yourself has likely been painful,” Sergeant Chris Allport of the Barrie Police Traffic Unit said in a statement. “Now is the time to come forward and help the Sams family bring resolution to what has been 25 years of painstaking agony. The same can be said to anyone who knows who is responsible for what happened during the early morning hours of April 26, 1997. Just call us, it is the right thing to do.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Barrie Police Service Sams tipline at 705-728-9712 or by email at traffictips@barriepolice.ca.  If you wish to remain anonymous, please call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or report online at www.p3tips.com.

Images via Barrie Police