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    Posted January 17, 2011 by
    Toronto, Ontario

    Woman freezes


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    Home > News > Canada > Woman’s cries ignored as she freezes to death near Scarborough home

    Woman’s cries ignored as she freezes to death near Scarborough home

    Police are investigating how an  ailing woman froze to death near her Scarborough home early Monday after  police say her cries for help were ignored.

    The 66-year-old woman suffered from  dementia, and had little clothing to protect her on the coldest morning  of the year when she wandered away from her home.

    A newspaper delivery person found her  lying face up near the intersection of Brimley Road and McNicoll Avenue  in Scarborough around 5 a.m.

    She had no vital signs when she was taken to hospital, where she was declared dead.

    Police say there was nothing  suspicious about her disappearance. However, at least two people told  officers they heard a woman’s screams in the middle of the night but did  not call 911.

    “They didn’t call police because they  said it was a dangerous area and they didn’t want to get involved,”  Toronto police Sgt. David Dube told the Toronto Star.

    “It’s sad because this could have  been a totally different outcome,” Dube said, adding that people have an  “obligation” to call police when people are in distress.

    Police found dirt marks around a car  door, leading them to believe the woman tried to get inside the vehicle.  There were also indications she tried to open a screen door of a home.

    The woman’s husband first noticed that she was not in bed at 2 a.m.

    When she still had not returned to  bed at 3 a.m., he began driving around the neighbourhood in search of  her. When that failed, he contacted police at 4:44 a.m.

    The woman was found after she had  been outside for about three hours. Paramedics were unable to perform  chest compressions because the body was frozen.

    Her death came on Toronto’s coldest day of the year so far, with the overnight temperature plunging to -28C with the wind chill.

    Police said an autopsy will be conducted, but it’s believed the cause of death is hypothermia.

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