Wife Deluded Others About Pregnancy

Thursday, October 5th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

RAVENNA, Ohio (AP) — The woman who authorities say cut a baby boy from the womb of his dead mother may have convinced her husband that she was pregnant because of her size.

The heavyset Michelle Bica told her husband, Thomas, the baby was theirs and that she had given birth while he was working, Detective Greg Francis said Wednesday.

Tissue samples from the infant, from the dead woman, Theresa Andrews, and from her husband, Jon, were being analyzed to confirm a genetic match.

The week-old boy, found late Monday in the Bica house, was expected to be released from the hospital Thursday. The Andrews family says he has been named Oscar.

Michelle Bica committed suicide Tuesday as police arrived to question her about the week-old disappearance of Theresa Andrews, who lived a few blocks away. Andrews' body was later found buried in the dirt floor of Bica's garage, and the 8-pound, 6-ounce baby boy was found alive inside her home.

``He indicated during his interview that the whole time he had believed that his wife and he conceived about nine months ago with a September due date and that he believed his wife had given birth Wednesday, Sept. 27, and had brought the baby home,'' Francis said.

Coroner Roger Marcial said Bica had not been pregnant recently but could have convinced others she was because she was obese.

The coroner also said Andrews was shot once in the back and likely died instantly. The .22-caliber bullet matched ammunition in the gun Bica used to kill herself.

Bica, 39, left no note of explanation, he said.

Traces of blood found in the Bica house indicate Andrews was shot in the first-floor laundry room, Marcial said. Her due date was Wednesday.

The straight cut of the crude Caesarean section on Andrews led Marcial to conclude that the baby was removed after the shooting. ``I just figure if the cutting was done before she died, there would have been a lot of struggling,'' he said.

Prosecutor Victor Vigluicci said the baby probably was delivered Sept. 27, the day Andrews disappeared in Ravenna, a city of about 12,000 some 30 miles southeast of Cleveland.

On the day she disappeared, Andrews had paged her husband at work and said a woman had called inquiring about a vehicle they were trying to sell.

Jon Andrews, a sheet-metal worker, told police that when he got home at 4:30 p.m., the house was open, the vehicle gone and his wife missing. Police found the vehicle about a block away and later found the Jeep keys in Bica's purse.

A series of cellular phone calls to the Andrews' house led police to Bica. There was no indication whether the women had known each other.

On Monday, officers questioned Bica about the Sept. 27 calls. When police returned that night, they heard a gunshot and found her body in an upstairs bedroom.

Thomas Bica, 41, a county corrections officer, was questioned and released. He had met his wife in 1994 while she served a jail sentence for receiving stolen property, Vigluicci said.