Death of Norah and Romy Carpentier | The girls’ mother recounts a disturbing morning

(Quebec) Amélie Lemieux has delivered a disturbing account of the moments following the disappearance of her daughters in the summer of 2020, the story of a mother in crisis who went on her own in search of Norah and Romy hours before the police send an AMBER alert.

“I was asking for helicopters, an AMBER alert. It was very long. I didn’t understand, ”said the woman on Monday on the first day of the coroner’s public inquest to shed light on the deaths of Norah, Romy and their father, Martin Carpentier.

Two and a half years after the events, the wounds are still raw. The tiny room in the Quebec City courthouse, filled with lawyers and reporters, struggled to contain her grief. “I’m still stuck on Highway 20 today. »

Amélie Lemieux still does not understand. She still does not understand how the one she considered “a good father” could kill Norah and Romy. She still does not understand why the police took so long to start the search.


Norah and Romy Carpentier

On July 8, 2020, his phone rang at 9:45 p.m. The number was withheld. A policeman asks her if her daughters are with her. They are with their father. Twenty minutes earlier, Martin Carpentier’s wrecked car was found on Highway 20 on the South Shore of Quebec. The man and the girls are nowhere to be found.

“I became hysterical. I was no longer able to control myself. I just wanted to know where my children were. She goes to the scene of the accident. That evening, she confides in an investigator: “I said that Martin will not come out of the woods. There, he’s scared, it doesn’t look like him and we have to find him. He won’t get out of there. »

The next day at dawn, she returns to the scene. “I decided to go and find my children. I went up the 20 in a westerly direction. I stopped at one truck stop. I asked a truck driver if he had seen my children. I asked him to announce it in his credit card to the other truckers. I went into a convenience store to ask questions. »

Hours before the AMBER alert, which will finally be sent at 3 p.m. the day after the disappearances, the distressed mother finds herself on the ground asking for help from anyone who crosses her path.

With a friend, she walks the small roads near Saint-Apollinaire, where the bodies will finally be found days later.

“We arrived on Row Bois Joly, at the crossroads of the Bois de l’Ail road. I was shouting: ‘Norah, Romy’”, recalls Amélie Lemieux. When her friend asks her if she should take the road to Bois de l’Ail, the mother declines. The road is full of stones. Norah lost a sandal. Amélie Lemieux thinks she could not walk there.

“I was next to them,” says the mother, who suddenly bursts into tears. “We turned around. I was right next to them. I was so close and I didn’t know it. »

A “good father”

The public inquiry scheduled for 21 days of hearing seeks to shed light on what could have prevented the tragedy, including police work, but also on what motivated the father’s gesture. Monday, Amélie Lemieux assured that she was still in the void.

“I can’t explain it. I’m the last person I think this would have happened to. When I heard things like that on the radio, I felt lucky to have children with a good father,” she said.

She recounted in detail her relationship with Carpentier, how she met him on a messaging app in 2008. She recounted how she was then pregnant with Norah, how she and her new suitor soon moved in together and then how Carpentier became the official father of the girl in 2010 by adopting her. Romy was born in 2013.


Martin Carpentier

She described an altogether banal relationship, punctuated by financial troubles, spats over the sharing of tasks, which ended after mediation sessions in a relative good agreement in 2015.

In 2020, she remembers that her former spouse had lost weight. With the pandemic, construction sites closed and the house painter found himself in financial trouble.

“He was more anxious financially. I told him that it was not necessary to pay me child support,” said the mother. “The construction sites have closed. Martin never returned to work. He committed suicide. »

A person then confides to him that Martin Carpentier would be afraid of losing custody of Norah, of whom he was not the biological father.

“He didn’t tell me about it. I don’t remember who told me about it. I knew he had difficulty with that bond, that he was afraid of losing custody. I went to see him to reassure him, to tell him that he was a good father. »

She and her daughters even give Martin a gift for Father’s Day in 2020, a few days before the tragedy. It’s an apron, with the inscription on it: “Not all superheroes wear a cape”.

The bodies of the two girls were found in a wooded area on July 11. The body of the father, who allegedly killed them with a branch, was found on July 20, five kilometers away.

source site-63