SWAT team brought in to help clear her house
A Mesa woman was found dead Tuesday in her east Mesa home, and the Maricopa County SWAT team was called in because of the deplorable condition of the home.
A neighbor called the Sheriff's Office and requested a welfare check because she hadn't seen the 64-year-old woman for several days. Deputies discovered the woman dead, apparently of natural causes.
However, they summoned the SWAT team due to the overwhelming stench in the house resulting from the woman's hoarding habits and the fact that as many as 50 cats lived in the house with her. Fox 10 reports the SWAT team is the only group with equipment such as breathing apparatus enabling deputies to survive in the house with the odors present.
Sgt. Brandon Jones tells Fox 10 the MCSO is seeking assistance from the Arizona Humane Society and other animal rescue groups to take possession of the cats in order to check their health and offer the healthy cats for adoption.
The sheriff's office also says due to the hoarding, the woman's home may be structurally unsound.
(Photo courtesy Fox 10)