St. John's murder victim was nine months pregnant
The 29-year-old St. John's woman whose remains were found in a suitcase last week was a nine-months-pregnant mother of two, her father revealed Monday.
Amanda Power had been carrying the child of the man who has since been accused in her slaying, Peter Power told The Canadian Press.
"She was almost due,'' he said. "I don't think there's a worse hurt in the world that can compare with this.''
Power's body was discovered in St. John's by a group of young boys. She is believed to have been murdered a week ago, then dismembered at a later date. She had not been reported missing.
Warren White, 35, was arrested Friday in connection with the gruesome murder.
White had two court appearances over the weekend. He is charged with second-degree murder and committing an indignity to a dead body. He also faces outstanding charges for assault and uttering threats, in an unrelated incident.
White has been ordered by the court to undergo a week-long psychiatric assessment to determine whether he is fit to stand trial, and will be back in court on June 16.
Police are still combing the area where Amanda Power's body was found, including a nearby river and the St. John's harbour.
They have been silent on what they are looking for and whether they have found anything else.
Couple met in rehab
Peter Power, 59, said his daughter met White while in rehab for a drug addiction last year.
"For the last while, she was trying really hard doing the methadone treatment and everything to get her life straightened out,'' he said, describing her as a bright and happy child whose life spun out of control in her teen years.
Methadone is a narcotic used to wean addicts from drugs such as OxyContin, morphine and heroin.
"It seemed like things just changed for her for some reason, and she got into drugs," said the father, who is raising his daughter's two children, ages 10 and 12, at his home in nearby Paradise, N.L.
"She used to come quite a bit at first to see them and then all of a sudden she just faded away. ... I don't think she wanted her children to know what her lifestyle was really like. She knew that they were happy and protected here."
Boys made grisly discovery
Two of the boys told NTV about making the grisly discovery in a wooded area off of Warbury Street where they often play.
"It was like a big huge black suitcase and... it looked there was a belt on it, they'd tied it up so nobody could open it. Well we opened it and it was scary," said one of the boys.
Another boy told NTV's Darrin Bent: "We saw a suitcase and we opened it and we thought it was an animal or something and we found out it was a body."
The mother of one of the boys said she was worried about the long-term effects on her son after such a traumatic experience.
"Guess what I'm worried about?" asked Paula Williams. "If he's going to have nightmares in the nighttime, if he's going to wake up crying. He's not having them now but he might have them later on down the line. You don't know."
People who live on the street where the couple lived said police had been called to their apartment several times, but the news still came as a shock.
"It bothers me you don't know what's going on in your neighbourhood," said Paul Whitten, who grew up playing in the forest where the boys found the remains.
Murders in St. John's are extremely rare. The city has a homicide rate of 0.6 per cent per 100,000 people, one of Canada's lowest.
With files from The Canadian Press