A chance encounter between a Toronto real estate agent and Doctor Elana Shamji has shed some new light on the prosecution’s case for murder against her husband.
The real estate agent – who is asking to not be identified – told police she met the Scarborough Hospital family doctor while canvassing her upscale neighborhood one day for potential home-sellers, in September 2016.
“I knocked on her door and we chatted on the steps for a while. She was very nice . . . very sweet. But I could sense something was bothering her,” the woman recalled in an interview with police. They now know Elana Shamji was planning to leave her unhappy marriage; to move from the family home and into the center of town closer to her work.
The real estate agent fears for her safety, because she will likely be called as a witness at the upcoming trial of the neurosurgeon. She asks that her name not be revealed. She says that “I was just asking her if she’d ever thought of selling her home. I was looking for sales leads. And she said she just might be. I got the clear feeling that she was about to leave her husband. I think she knew she had to leave . . . that she might be in danger.”
They exchanged phone numbers and planned to stay in touch. But several months went by and they never spoke again.
Then, in the first week of December, the agent happened to see a television news story about the police discovering a lady doctor’s body, found stuffed into a large suitcase near the Humber River a few days before. They announced the arrest of her husband, Doctor Mohammed Shamji, on the charge of First Degree Murder.
At first, the agent didn’t connect the horrifying story to the woman she’d met, until her coworker called and they started talking about the case during the newscast. And when they showed a picture of a smiling Doctor Alana Shamji on the screen – she knew.
“Oh my God. That’s the nice woman with the little girl I’d spoken to months earlier.”