Body of 87-year-old woman found in freezer at her California home

The body of an elderly woman was found inside a freezer at her California home during a welfare check — and investigators questioned her daughter, police said.

The 87-year-old Riverside woman was identified by a relative as Miriam Travis, a retired Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department homicide detective, the Press-Enterprise reported.

Another relative summoned cops to Travis’ home on New Ridge Drive early Sunday to conduct a welfare check, Riverside Police Officer Javier Cabrera told the newspaper.

Travis’ daughter gave inconsistent statements on her mother’s whereabouts, leading cops to search the “disheveled” home that had a foul odor, Cabrera said.

Officers found Travis’ body inside a working freezer in her garage. The condition of her body was unclear, but an autopsy was being conducted to determine a cause of death, the newspaper reported.

Travis’ daughter, who was not identified by authorities, was questioned by cops and later released until detectives can determine how her mother died and if she had any role in the handling of the dead woman’s body, according to the report.

Miriam Travis, an 87-year-old retired Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department homicide detective, was found dead inside a freezer in her Riverside, California home.

Travis was identified to the newspaper by Kerri Nickell of Oklahoma, who said the woman was her step-grandmother. Travis worked as a sergeant in the homicide bureau at the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department from 1979 until she retired in 1990, a spokeswoman for the agency told the Press-Enterprise.

Travis and her husband moved to Riverside in 1990 after she retired. Her husband died two years after the move, leading Travis to change the locks on her home and cut off contact with her extended family, Nickell said.

“It was like this is my grandmother one day, and then we never heard from her again,” Nickell told the Press-Enterprise, adding that Travis and her daughter were “kind of like” hermits.

“She was always quiet and in her room most of the time,” Nickell said of Travis’ daughter. “I didn’t know her at all.”

The 64-year-old woman lived with her mother, Cabrera told The Post. She initially told cops her mother wasn’t home, but inconsistencies in her account led officers to search the residence, he said.

“At this moment, as we wait for the autopsy report, she is not a suspect,” Cabrera said while confirming the woman’s daughter had been released by police. “She is a person of interest.”

An autopsy is expected to be completed within a few days. A relative said they hadn’t heard from the elderly woman in two months, Cabrera said.

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