Medical examiner: Body of disabled woman found in suitcase weighed 40 lbs.

News
This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.
Data pix.

**Editor's note: Some readers may find the details in this report disturbing.**

SAN DIEGO – The decomposing body of a 28-year-old disabled woman found in a suitcase in her mother’s Lakeside apartment weighed 40 pounds, according to a medical examiner’s report released Wednesday.

Detectives discovered the remains of Brooke Macbeth while deputies were serving an eviction notice March 3 in the 11600 block of Woodside Avenue.

Her mother, Bonnie Macbeth, answered the door when San Diego Court Services Deputies knocked. She said, “Come in, I got something to show you.”

Deputies immediately noticed a foul odor. Bonnie said, “My daughter is dead in the bedroom.” She then informed deputies her daughter was “in a suitcase.”

A deputy used a knife to cut open a black duffle bag with black duct tape around it and located a second duffle bag. He cut it open and found a pink and brown suitcase with duct tape around the zipper. After he cut open the suitcase and ripped through several layers of black trash bags he found a towel or blanket, noting a “rotten” smell. Officials then notified Homicide.

The autopsy reported no evidence of trauma or obvious natural disease and stated it is possible she died of natural causes. Though the date of death could not be determined, it was determined she had been dead at least several months, according to the report.

Based on the autopsy findings and the circumstances surrounding the death, the cause and manner of death are both also undetermined, the report stated.

Brooke had been known to weigh approximately 75-80 pounds and was wheelchair-bound with a probable neurologic disorder.

She was reportedly last seen alive by her younger sister approximately one year ago, according to the report. Her sister said she had appeared to have lost some weight, which she assumed was from difficulty eating. Brooke was unable to perform daily functions on her own and required full-time care, according to her sister.

The mother was taken to the hospital and placed on psychiatric hold. She informed the deputies she had tried to hang herself on March 2 and had been on a “vodka binge” for three days because she knew they were coming to evict her. She reportedly had previous suicide attempts.

When questioned, the mother said she found her daughter dead in bed and was afraid to report it. She informed deputies her daughter had died six months ago, 18 months ago and two years ago.

A missing person report had not been filed.

Download Fox 5 iPhone app  |  Download Fox 5 Android app

Most Popular Stories

Latest News

More News