DailyExpress.com – DETECTIVES in the United States have launched an investigation to see if Peter Pan author JM Barrie is linked to the mysterious recent discovery of two dead babies. The infants were found last week wrapped in 70-year-old newspapers inside two doctors’ bags placed in a travel trunk. It was in the basement of a building in Los Angeles.

The medical bags bore the name Jean M Barrie, while the mummified remains were found beside Peter Pan paraphernalia, prompting speculation they have a link to the famous Scottish son of Kirriemuir, Angus.

Los Angeles Police Department has made an appeal for information about the woman and whether she had any ties to JM Barrie or if the writer had been to California. Detective Sanchez, of the LAPD, posted a message on a web forum dedicated to JM Barrie last week, asking fans and scholars of the author for assistance.

He wrote: “We found several items and letters that might have belonged to a Jean Barrie. The letters were dated from the mid-1920s to 1930s. If anyone has any information on a female Jean Barrie who lived in Los Angeles and was a nurse during that time please contact me.”

Lieutenant Joe Loserelli said they are “going to figure out” if there was a connection to the Peter Pan author and added: “Whether there’s a link to the author, whether these are relatives, or whether it’s a freak coincidence, we don’t know.” There is a Jean M Barrie who was a well-known storyteller and performer of the day, who was also a relative of the Scottish author.

As well as the letters and newspapers, police found postcards from Canada and South America, photographs, and clothing, but they say they are most interested in the copy of Peter Pan and a membership card to an upmarket resort, called the Peter Pan Woodland Club, at Big Bear Lake, in California. There was also found a ticket stub from the closing ceremony of the 1932 Olympics at the LA Coliseum and a bundle of blank hospital test forms suggesting a strong link to a medical profession.

Detectives think the items, together with the woman’s name, carry a strong possibility the remains are somehow linked to Mr Barrie. They have also approached genealogy forums in a bid to discover his family tree and to see if further information on a Jean M Barrie can be found. But there is further confusion after records revealed a Scots-born private nurse by the name of Janet M Barrie once lived in the block of Los Angeles flats where the bodies were found last week.

She had emigrated to Canada and onwards to the United States before marrying an American doctor. The background of another Jean M Barrie, who was born in 1916 and lived in the same neighbourhood as the tragic infants, is also being investigated.

It is not known yet whether the babies died after their births, although initial suggestion from the authorities is that at least one of them was either aborted – an act that remained illegal in California until the Sixties – or stillborn.

Post-mortems on the remains are taking an unusually long time because of the fragility of the mummified bodies.

Pathologists and anthropologists are trying to determine if the babies were related and how they were killed. The teams of experts are also trying to reconstruct the circumstances of the deaths based on the autopsy results.

LAPD chief Charlie Beck added: “We have many more tools and technology available to us than before, which may allow for identification of the victims and closure to any family members”.

prma