Husband's mummified body had been in closet 2 years, wife says

Posted at 6:00 PM, Jun 14, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-14 18:00:01-04

ALBUQUERQUE, NM (KOAT/CNN) - A New Mexico woman has been taken to a mental hospital after a shocking find at her home. Authorities found her husband's mummified body inside a bedroom closet.

There's now a sign on the garage of the home warning trespassers to keep out. The house is in foreclosure. When deputies showed up to evict the owners last month they were shocked at what they found. 

"I never would have imagined that he would be laying in the closet into a mummified state,” said Thomas Huerta, the man’s son. Police found the body of Thomas Huerta's father on a mattress in the closet with a pillow propped under his head, and he was tucked in under blankets.

The man's wife told police he died in April of 2015, more than two years earlier. "I try not to think about it. It is very difficult,” Thomas Huerta said. 

Huerta said he's still trying to let the news sink in. He lives in California now, but visited Albuquerque last October to introduce his father to his pregnant girlfriend. "Not only she was in there, but so was his mummified corpse,” Thomas Huerta said.

According to a report, neighbors noticed the man hadn't been around, but when they asked his wife, she only told them he was preparing for the ministry. The woman told police her husband suffered from chronic back pain so he often slept in that closet.

He had been coughing up bile, but refused to go the hospital. Thomas Huerta said he never imagined his father's life would end like this. “It is horrible to think that that was his destiny,” Thomas Huerta said. 

Authorities are now trying to determine how the man died. It's unclear if the woman will face criminal charges.


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