03/26/2013 04:15 EDT | Updated 05/26/2013 05:12 EDT

Trial begins for Calgary mom accused of murdering 2 newborns

A trial is underway against a Calgary woman accused of second-degree murder in the deaths of two of her newborns.

Meredith Katharine Borowiec is also accused of attempted murder of a third newborn that was found by the father in a northwest Calgary dumpster in 2010.

A year after that discovery, investigators learned that Borowiec had given birth twice before, in 2008 and 2009. It is alleged both babies died shortly after they were born. Their bodies were never recovered.

As the Crown began laying out its double second-degree murder case against Borowiec on Tuesday, the first witness was a police officer who was on the scene on Oct. 20, 2010 when a baby was found alive in northwest Calgary garbage bin.

He told court he found the accused sitting on some steps nearby with blood on the blanket that was wrapped around her waist.

The officer said that while he accompanied Borowiec to the hospital, she told the medics that she had given birth earlier that day and that she didn’t know what to do.

This evidence was given in a voir dire — a hearing to determine what evidence can be presented at the trial. Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Peter MacIntyre has not yet ruled on its admissibility in the trial by judge alone, without a jury.

The Crown is arguing that the officer’s testimony should be ruled “similar fact evidence” for the current double second-degree murder trial.

Last October CBC News learned that Borowiec, who is being held at the Southern Alberta Forensic Psychiatric Centre, gave birth again in July while she was in custody. The baby boy was given up for adoption.

The trial is set to run until May 4.