Police in Winnipeg have charged a 40-year-old woman with six counts of concealing a body after they found the remains of six infants in a storage locker she rented. But the Toronto Star reports that it could be months before forensic tests determine how the babies died and whether Andrea Giesbrecht was their mother. Employees of the U-Haul facility opened the locker when Giesbrecht stopped making payments, and a court appearance late last month might shed light on why she fell behind. Giesbrecht pleaded guilty to defrauding an older neighbor of about $8,000 as evidence of a long-term gambling addiction came to light, reports the Winnipeg Sun.
"I feel distraught and severely taken advantage of," her 73-year-old neighbor wrote in a victim-impact statement obtained by the CBC. But a friend of Giesbrecht came to her defense: "In the five years I have known Andrea, I have come to love her as a friend and person," she wrote. "She is a loving, considerate person and I have seen her drop everything to be there." Giesbrecht, who also has used the name Andrea Naworynski, is married and has two teenage sons. Court documents suggest she got hooked on gambling as a teenager and had repeatedly borrowed money from her now-dead parents that was never repaid. (More Winnipeg stories.)