Fijian authorities have arrested and charged a Tennessee man with the murder of his new wife found dead in a hotel room after the newlyweds traveled from the U.S. to the South Pacific nation for their honeymoon.
Christe Chen Dawson, a 36-year-old graduate of the University of Tennessee who worked as a pharmacist for Kroger, recently married 38-year-old Bradley Robert Dawson, an IT professional at the child welfare system non-profit Youth Village, in Memphis, Tennessee, before traveling to Fiji for their honeymoon.
Chen Dawson’s body was reportedly found on July 9 inside a hotel room at the Turtle Island Resort in the Yasawa Islands — though the cause and manner of her death remain unclear.
Bradley Robert Dawson was arrested for the murder of his wife, but his defense attorney recently told FOX 13 Memphis that his client maintains his innocence and is working with his legal team to hopefully get out on bond during his next court appearance before Fiji’s High Court in Lautoka, which is scheduled for July 27.
People reported that the 1980 Brooke Shields film "The Blue Lagoon" was filmed at the luxurious resort, which only accepts 14 couples as guests at a time and offers private beach access and horseback riding.
NBC News reported that celebrity couples who have spent their honeymoons at the resort include Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey, as well as Britney Spears and ex-husband Kevin Federline.
Fiji Sun reported that Bradley Robert Dawson made his initial court appearance before Judge Sekonaia Vodokisolomone at the Magistrates Court in Lautoka last week on the murder charge.
Because the defendant is accused of an indictable offense, the judge said the bail application and a police prosecutor’s request for a DNA sample from Dawson will be considered at the upcoming High Court hearing.
Back home in Tennessee, Youth Village said Dawson has been suspended until further notice amid news of his new bride's sudden death.