Edmonton Sun

Monday, November 25, 2002

Suspect pregnant

Child No. 6 on the way

By AJAY BHARDWAJ, EDMONTON SUN

A city woman facing a second-degree murder charge is pregnant with her sixth child, relatives said yesterday.

Jessica Bigstone, 25, is charged in connection with the stabbing death of Edward Vivian, 28.

"She's three or four months pregnant," said Jeanette Longtin-French, one of Bigstone's aunts. "I called my brother because I can't raise (the child). I've already raised my kids."

Mark Kastner, a spokesman for Children's Services, said yesterday an incarcerated woman still has the right to keep a newborn unless she poses a risk to it.

"It would depend how she feels about it," said Kastner.

"We would work with the social worker or probation officer and if they feel the child is at risk, we could apprehend the child."

Vivian was found bleeding to death in a downtown apartment suite Thursday night. An autopsy showed he died of multiple stab wounds to the neck, chest and face.

A 17-month-old tot, Bigstone's child, was also found in the apartment, suffering from a laceration to the hand. He is recovering.

Kastner, who couldn't speak directly about the case, said the child, known as Que-Jib, is in temporary foster care. He said that in cases like this, the department usually looks for alternate caregivers for the child.

Bigstone has four other children - aged nine, seven, five and two - who are in the care of her aunt and uncle in Calling Lake, 186 km north of Edmonton.

While the three younger ones don't know what's happened to their mother, the oldest, Shanaice, is upset, said Leo Gladue, Bigstone's 21-year-old cousin.

"She was crying after school on Friday," he said. "She wants to see her mom, she misses her."

His parents, Lawrence and Beatrice Bigstone, were trying to console Shanaice, he added.

The Bigstones had planned to surprise the children by taking them to visit their mother for Christmas.

The four children have lived with the Bigstones for several years.

Copyright © 2002, Canoe, a division of Netgraphe Inc.