On November 22, police performed a wellness check on Jeanne Souron-Mathers after she had not been seen in over two weeks. Officers found the 75-year-old woman dead in her apartment from natural causes. While looking through the apartment, officers also found something concerning in the freezer — the body of Jeanne’s husband who had not been seen since 2009.
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Adding more intrigue to the finding, the police in Tooele, Utah, announced there was a notarized letter in the apartment that explicitly states Jeanne had nothing to do with her late husband Paul’s death, NBC News reported.
“It says that his wife was not responsible for his death,” Sgt. Jeremy Hansen of the Tooele Police Department said in a press conference. “There’s more in the letter, but we’re not releasing that yet.”
This letter was presumably made for a moment just like the one officers stumbled into. Paul was last seen at the Veterans Affairs in February 2009 where he was receiving medical care for a terminal illness he was suffering from. Paul is estimated to have died anywhere from February 4, 2009, and March 8, 2009.
While police are still piecing together what happened, it is thought that the two hatched a plan so Jeanne would still receive benefits from Veterans Affairs and Social Security. CNN has estimated the elderly woman would have been paid around $177,000 from the VA over the years since her husband’s death.
Currently, police are waiting for the financial records of the elderly couple to see if their hunch is correct. Police also found the person who notarized Paul’s letter to get her perspective on what she remembered. Unfortunately, the notary explained that she did not read the document at the time of signing it.
To further validate the validity of the handwriting, police have also tasked handwriting experts to determine if Paul did indeed write the letter proclaiming his wife’s innocence.
Evan Kline, a caretaker at the retirement community where Jeanne lived, was shocked to hear that Jeanne’s husband was in the freezer the entire time.
“Jeanne was, by all appearances, a very nice person. Very friendly,” Kline said.“We’ve talked to her quite a bit and took her to doctor appointments.” He added that his “jaw hit the floor” when he found out about the body in the freezer.