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Woman freezes to death inside Swedish castle

Woman freezes to death inside Swedish castle

Published: 03 Jan 2011 07:54 GMT+01:00
Updated: 03 Jan 2011 07:54 GMT+01:00

A 65-year-old woman froze to death after somehow being locked inside the fortress walls of an historic Swedish castle where she had attended a special New Year's Eve mass, police said Sunday.

The woman, who had been suffering from psychological problems and was living at a home for people with special needs, had been reported missing Friday afternoon, said Ulf Karlsson, a spokesman for police in the southeastern town of Kalmar.

There was no sign of her until Sunday morning, when "one and a half days later they opened the doors to the Kalmar castle's inner courtyard, and a janitor found the woman there," he told AFP.

The woman, who had spent two nights out in below freezing temperatures, "was showing slight signs of life when she was found, but her body temperature was much too low, and she died," Karlsson added.

Following the discovery, police had spoken with staff who said they had seen the woman attend a special New Year's Eve mass at the castle, which was first built in the 12th century but owes its Renaissance style to a 16th century makeover.

"They had seen her alive at 4.45pm and had asked her to leave before locking up, but somehow this woman stayed behind," Karlsson said.

He said there had been a way for her to get out, passing through the restrooms to an unlocked door on the other side, "but I guess she didn't find it."

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

14:09 January 3, 2011 by Swedesmith
Somebody screwed up big time.
16:02 January 3, 2011 by Roy E
@Swedesmith

A lot of that seems to be going around these days. Let's hope a new 'normal' is not being established.
16:09 January 3, 2011 by GLO
Sad, no fault, just sad for woman..
16:36 January 3, 2011 by sneal
I am surprised they don't have some type of system in place for verifying that no one is still on/in the castle and castle grounds. I understand it is a huge place, but if you are going to be open to the public, you must account for what is a relatively common procedure in any public related business. But maybe not.....and as a matter of fact I almost got locked in a castle on Öland and the only reason the grounds keeper came to find us, is because the cashier told him we were in there, but if she had not and just left, he would have just locked us in there, not even bothering to check the castle out.
23:36 January 3, 2011 by dizzymoe33
This is sad. Here when you go to museums and things they do a security sweep to make sure everyone has left the building. I feel sorry for the woman and her family.
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