The Langley woman charged in the death of her seven-year-old daughter made her first appearance at provincial court in Surrey on Monday.
The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) announced Aaliyah Rosa’s 36-year-old mother, Kerryann Lewis, was arrested and charged on Aug. 17 with second degree murder for thr girl’s death.
Lewis’ appearance lasted barely four minutes.
She wore a grey camouflage print sweatshirt, black glasses and had her short black hair tied up in a low bun.
Lewis remained silent the whole time, simply leaning against the wall before reading a piece of paper handed to her by a sheriff.
The judge adjourned the hearing until Aug. 28 after being told that Lewis’ counsel was at Supreme Court for a different case this week.
On July 22, 2018 at about 9:30 p.m., emergency services were called to an apartment building near 200 Street and 68 Avenue in Willoughby, where they found the seven-year-old Aaliyah deceased.
Aaliyah’s death was deemed a homicide and IHIT took charge of the case.
Investigators determined that it was an isolated incident and there was no risk to public safety.
Speaking Monday, Integrated Homicide Investigation Team Cpl. Frank Jang said that police had canvassed the neighbourhood and conducted “numerous” interviews in the weeks since.
“This was a deeply tragic case that affected the entire community,” said Jang.
“Our deepest condolences go out to the family of Aaliyah Rosa and we hope that we were able to provide some answers to her family.”
Jang declined to provide any details on how Aaliyah died, what injuries Lewis sustained or what the pair’s living arrangements were like.
Lewis had initially been receiving medical care, Jang noted.
Police are not expecting to recommend any more charges, Jang said, adding that he hoped Monday’s news would bring some level of closure to the Rosa family.
“Aaliyah is still no longer with us and her family has to pick up the pieces and carry on life without her. And now, her mother has been charged in her murder,” said Jang.
“Make no mistake: there are no winners.”
Anyone with information, who has yet to come forward to police, is asked to call the IHIT information line at 1-877-551-IHIT (4448) or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
– with files from Katya Slepian/Black Press Media