Man lay dead home for a year
Police in Gouda yesterday found the body of a 58-year-old man who has been dead in his apartment for at least a year. Authorities say he most likely died of natural causes.
The worrisome find came after a neighbor who hadn't seen the man she called "Frank" for a while decided to investigate; the story of the woman in Rotterdam who lay dead in her apartment for ten years before she was found, was still fresh in her memory.
"It had been a while since I'd seen him take the garbage out; I think the last time I saw him was in March. I thought that maybe he had been admitted to the hospital, because he always looked bad to me,” she said. She asked around in the neighborhood, and when nobody could say that they had recently seen Frank, she called the housing association, who in turned called the police.
Police had to force the front door; stacked in the hall was a year’s worth of leaflets and newspapers, which, together with the expiration date of the food in the fridge gave an indication of when Frank died. It didn’t seem that there was foul play involved, but police still carried out a short investigation to rule out a crime.
Police spokesman Wim Hoonhout said that from what police had learned about the man it is easy to understand why nobody missed him for up to a year. “He was pretty withdrawn; no contact with family and neighbors,” said Hoonhout.
The neighbor who prompted the search for him confirmed it. “I had the impression he didn’t really want contact with others. He would get help sometimes when his moped wouldn’t start, but that’s it,” she said.
Police have meanwhile been able to track down family members.