A woman with Alzheimer’s disease who wandered away from her Riverside home last weekend was discovered dead three days later behind the residence, where she had apparently collapsed while trying to return, authorities said today.
No foul play is suspected in the death of 78-year-old Ella Elizabeth Anderson, according to Riverside police.
Anderson, who had a history of wandering off, was reported missing by family members Saturday afternoon after she failed to return to the single-story house she and her husband shared in the 2400 block of Carlton Place.
On Tuesday afternoon, Anderson’s decomposing remains were found in the rear of the property, adjacent to a fence where authorities believe she died of natural causes.
An autopsy was pending.
“We’re surmising that she came back late Saturday night or Sunday morning,” Riverside police Sgt. David Amador told City News Service. “I have no idea why she didn’t go into the house.”
Amador said the victim’s elderly husband suffers from a number of ailments and apparently never heard his wife outside.
The area where Anderson’s body was located was searched Saturday afternoon by police and members of her family, Amador noted.
“It’s not somewhere that if you looked out the back door, you’d notice a body,” the sergeant said.
He said Anderson had gotten lost previously after leaving her residence, and neighbors had to escort her home.