becareful who you knock up
June 9 2001 at 12:02 AM

Calgary police continue search for answers in baby's death, missing sister

CALGARY (CP) - A grim search for the tiny body of a baby girl along the Bow River resumed briefly Friday as police continued their quest for answers in her disappearance and the death of her 15-month-old brother.

Police and fire department divers needed two hours to complete a search of a lagoon near Calgary's downtown for three-month-old Gemini Brown.

"It wasn't a huge area," said police Insp. Blake McWilliam.

"It's just so dark with zero visibility that the divers are doing this by feel - an inch-by-inch kind of search. Of course, it's not a flat bottom and there's peaks and valleys there."

The children's mother, Rie Fujii, is accused of failing to properly dispose of the body of her son, Domenic Brown. A 23-year-old Japanese citizen who came to Calgary four years ago on a student visa, Fujii was formally charged before a judge Thursday night. She is scheduled to appear in court Monday to enter a plea.

Police found the decomposing body of her toddler son in her virtually empty southeast Calgary apartment Tuesday. They had been called by the landlord, who reported a strong odour when he went there to collect rent.

After Fujii came forward Wednesday, investigators began looking for another body - that of her infant daughter, Gemini. Police said they believed the girl's body may have been wrapped in plastic bags and thrown into the Bow River some time over the last two weeks.

It is expected Fujii, who was distraught when she notified authorities, will be under suicide watch while in custody. Police have said charges against her may be elevated.

"I guess anything's possible, you know, depending on any type of results - for instance, search results or any information that the public does provide us with," said McWilliam.

Police have managed to reach the children's father, Peter Brown.

"There's been some contact made, I believe, by the investigators and it's very limited at this point," McWilliam said. "Obviously efforts are being made and steps are being taken to further this contact and obtain more information."

Fujii and Brown had not been seeing each other for some time, McWilliam said.

Police used an interpreter to contact her parents, who live in Japan, but it was unclear whether they would travel to Calgary to support their daughter. The Japanese Consulate in Edmonton has also been contacted.

"Of course, that is part of our mandate here . . . but at this time we don't have any comment about that situation," said Suzanne Trigg, public relations and cultural affairs assistant at the consulate.

Neighbours in the run-down apartment block where Fujii had lived said they heard a child's repeated screams for days and nights, until there was a sudden silence.

Getting information about Fujii has been a bit of a problem for police so far.

"There are degrees of difficulty," said McWilliam.

"You establish a circle of associates and friends and either people choose to come forward on their own or we get information that suggests to us that we should talk to others who haven't been forthcoming."

An official cause of death for Domenic Brown has not been released by the Calgary medical examiner's office.


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