N.S. man who wed 'Black Widow' says marriage was never registered
Melissa Ann Weeks, 77, of New Glasgow, N.S., also known as the 'Internet Black Widow,' leaves a Cape Breton Regional Police Services vehicle escorted by Const. Erin Donovan, left, and Const.Geoff MacLeod for a court appearance at the Sydney Justice Centre Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2012. (Vaughan Merchant / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Published Thursday, October 18, 2012 8:02AM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, October 18, 2012 8:12AM EDT
HALIFAX -- A man who wed a woman dubbed the "Black Widow" for her criminal record linked to previous relationships says he is not legally married to her, two weeks after she was charged with trying to kill him.
Fred Weeks said in an interview that Nova Scotia's Vital Statistics division sent him a letter indicating it would not register his marriage to 77-year-old Melissa Ann Weeks because false information had been provided on the marriage document.
"I'm not married to her," Weeks, 75, told The Canadian Press from his home in New Glasgow, N.S. "It's (Weeks) not her name."
Weeks made the comments after being released from hospital in Sydney, N.S. Police allege Melissa Weeks gave her new husband a noxious substance, listed in court documents as the tranquilizer benzodiazepine.
She was charged on Oct. 2 with attempted murder and administering the drug. She is due in Sydney provincial court next week for a bail hearing. None of the charges has been proven in court.
Weeks said he has little recollection of what took place in between the time the pair married on Sept. 25 and when he returned home from hospital early the following week.
"I was heavily sedated by whomever, I don't know. I'm not accusing anyone," he said, adding that his memories come and go, and that he has trouble recalling dates, daily chores and events.
"I don't remember anything at all about waking up in Sydney. ... My memory is coming back piece by piece."
Weeks didn't want to discuss the allegations against Melissa Weeks or how he feels about their relationship.
The father of six adult children said he has started a journal and police have told him to contact them if anything related to the case comes back to him.
"But I haven't been able to remember anything," he said.
"I remember the wedding, that was all, and things got kind of blank.
"I think it's the drugs -- pretty powerful drugs I received from somebody."
Court documents filed by the Cape Breton Regional Police indicate that benzodiazepine was found in his system after he was admitted to the hospital on Sept. 29. His son, David, had told investigators that he had only been prescribed a drug to lower cholesterol, which he had already stopped taking.
In an interview, David Weeks said he read the letter from Vital Statistics after delivering it to his father last Saturday.
"The paperwork said she didn't have the proper documents to prove that name," he said, adding that he was pleased the marriage had not been certified. "I think it's great."
A spokeswoman for Service Nova Scotia, which oversees Vital Statistics, said she couldn't comment on this particular case, citing privacy concerns. But Celeste Sulliman said the registrar doesn't have to register a marriage if there are questions over the legitimacy of marriage applications and certificates.
Melissa Weeks has been married several times and has gone by several different last names.
David Weeks, 55, said he had met Melissa Weeks twice before the pair decided to marry just weeks after they met. He said he knew nothing of her earlier convictions for manslaughter and forgery until he watched a documentary about her and searched for information online.
He said his father had lost his first wife about two years ago and seemed happy to have a new girlfriend.
"He was lonely and looking for a companion," David Weeks said.
The couple had checked into a bed and breakfast in Sydney on Sept. 28, when she told the innkeeper that they had a rough crossing on the Newfoundland ferry and her husband wasn't feeling well, according to the application for a search and arrest warrant filed with the provincial court.
Fred Weeks later told his son that the couple had not made it to Newfoundland, the warrant says.
Melissa Weeks was convicted in the death of her husband, Gordon Stewart, who she had drugged and run over twice with a car in 1991 outside Halifax. She served two years of a six-year sentence for that crime.
She was also sentenced in 2005 to five years in prison on seven counts of theft from Alexander Strategos, a man in Florida she had met online. Investigators said she stole about US$20,000 from him.
Court documents also indicate that police seized several bags and bottles of prescription drugs and a handwritten note about the immediate need to get power of attorney from Melissa Weeks's home in New Glasgow.
The documents filed with the provincial court in Sydney say police took bottles containing seven different types of prescription tablets, along with several plastic bags with unidentified pills that were found in two purses.