The woman's husband passed away two years after moving into the house. That's when she changed the locks and stopped talking to her extended family.
The body of a retired cop was found lifeless in a working freezer inside a home in California. Police officers were called to the home for a welfare check, and when they found something off about her daughter's story, they searched the house and stumbled upon the corpse lying inside the freezer.
It was reported that the body belonged to an 87-year-old woman, identified by a relative as Miriam Travis, according to The Press-Enterprise.
On Sunday, the police arrived for the welfare check at the house in Riverside and spoke to Miriam's 63-year-old daughter, Carol. When officers asked Carol where her mother was, they felt her statements were inconsistent. So they decided to search the house, which was described as "disheveled" by Officer Javier Cabrera, a Riverside police spokesman.
Officers were hit with a foul smell when they entered the house and found piles of trash around. When they made their way to the garage, the officers found a working freezer, and inside it was Miriam's body. Officer Cabrera revealed that it had not decomposed.
Body of retired LA county cop is found in a freezer at home where she lived with her daughter https://t.co/2vO7RDv9MQ— Daily Mail US (@DailyMail) September 21, 2021
"Shocking. Very shocking. Especially because she’s little old sweet Miriam," said Randy Hayes, a neighbor who lived next to the Miriam and Carol for nearly three decades.
Randy noted that they were both extremely private and said, "I cannot overstate enough how reclusive they were."
Although Randy mentioned that he didn't know much about their personal lives, he described Miriam and her daughter as good neighbors.
"Very nice lady, they kept to themselves," Randy said about Miriam, according to NBC Los Angeles. "We watched over our place and they watched over ours when we were on vacations and stuff. I've never heard problems coming from the house... never heard arguments of that sort."
Talking about the shocking discovery the police officers made, the neighbor added: "It's a tragedy as you can imagine. I don't think any of us can imagine having our mom in a freezer right?"
The body of an 87-year-old woman was discovered inside a freezer in a garage at a home in Riverside. https://t.co/AJVTzumOtB— FOX 11 Los Angeles (@FOXLA) September 20, 2021
Another neighbor, Cedric Valentin, mentioned that he last saw Miriam about four months ago and recently had a strange encounter with Carol. "I asked the daughter, she came out she was real secretive and she was hiding behind the car and I said, 'Carol where's Miriam? you tell her I said hello,' she says 'oh she in the house,'" Cedric recalled.
Years ago, Miriam worked as a sergeant in the homicide bureau at the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. After retiring in 1990, she moved to Riverside along with her husband.
Things seemed to be going normally until Miriam lost her husband about two years after they moved. That's when Miriam reportedly changed the locks of her house and stopped talking to her extended family.
Relatives, including her step-granddaughter Kerri Nickell, noticed a visible change in Miriam and said she lived almost like a hermit in the house with her daughter.
"It was like this is my grandmother one day, and then we never heard from her again," Nickell told The Press-Enterprise.
Nickell also mentioned that Carol was "always quiet and in her room most of the time."
"I didn’t know her at all," she added.
Currently, authorities are waiting for an autopsy report to determine what caused Miriam's death. They are also hoping that it will help determine the level of involvement that Carol had in the case.
“At this moment, as we wait for the autopsy report, she is not a suspect,” Officer Cabrera said, as quoted by New York Post. Carol was released from custody but still remains a person of interest.
Cover image source: ABC7/YouTube