Pensioner died 'after becoming stuck behind kitchen unit during mouse hunt'

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A pensioner died after becoming stuck behind a unit in her kitchen, an inquest has heard.

Carole Williams, 74, was the subject of a missing person appeal before police officers found her concealed in the confined space.

Carole Williams, 74, was the subject of a missing person appeal before police officers found her concealed in the confined space. Picture: Avon and Somerset police

Carole Williams, 74, was the subject of a missing person appeal before police officers found her concealed in the confined space. Picture: Avon and Somerset police

On Tuesday, Avon Coroner's Court heard the pensioner may have been trying to find a mouse at her home in Clifton, Bristol, when she accidentally trapped herself.

Assistant coroner Dr Peter Harrowing said concerns were raised for Ms Williams, who had suffered a stroke in October 2016 and lived alone, by a taxi driver when she failed to appear for a scheduled journey on Sunday June 23 this year and did not respond to phone calls.

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Avon and Somerset Constabulary launched a missing person appeal in the early hours of June 24, before officers who entered her home later that day found the woman in the cramped space behind a kitchen unit.

Friends had last seen Ms Williams two days before she was found, but a post-mortem examination could not determine how long she had been trapped nor the definitive cause of her death, which was recorded as due to compression in a confined space.

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There was no evidence of external injuries or a further stroke, though the inquest was told it was possible she could have died from dehydration.

Dr Harrowing said there had been suggestions from friends of Ms Williams she had a mouse in her home, which may have led to her becoming stuck while searching for it.

He said: "It may be she was searching for the mouse or something else.

"She was unable to escape from that location and it was there she sadly died."

The coroner gave a verdict of accidental death.