A Utah man's body was discovered in a freezer inside his wife’s home 10 years after his death with a notarized letter claiming that his wife didn't kill him.
During a welfare check in November, authorities found Jeanne Sourone-Mathers, 75, dead in her apartment in Toole, Utah. After a further search, they also discovered the body of her husband, Paul Edward Mathers, in a freezer, FOX13 reported.
Mathers, who is believed to have been dead since 2009, was also found with a letter he allegedly wrote that stated his wife did not kill him.
"It was notarized on Dec. 2, 2008," Tooele Police Sgt. Jeremy Hansen told FOX13. "We believe he had a terminal illness."
People in the retirement community described Sourone-Mathers as "a sweet elderly woman who could not hurt a fly." Evan Kline, who lives in the retirement community, said he never met her husband.
"The story that — at least she was putting out — was her husband walked out on her," he told FOX13.
Some have speculated Sourone-Mathers kept her husband's death a secret so she could continue to receive his government benefits. Authorities confirmed to KSL that she continued to receive his Veterans Affairs checks after he died. Tooele Police believe she received at least $177,000 in government payouts.
"I think he died and she kept him so she didn’t have to turn in his social security," James Kite, another resident at the retirement community, said. "It’s been crazy. I’ve never seen anything like what’s been going on here."
An investigation into the mystery is ongoing and homicide has not yet been ruled out. Detectives interviewed the person who notarized the letter in 2008, who said she didn't even read the note.
"She just stamped it and signed it," Hansen said.