GRETNA, La. — Authorities say fears that an 84-year-old woman had been murdered in bed at a Louisiana senior care facility were unfounded.
Pauline Ballon (bal-AHN’) died Tuesday at the facility in the New Orleans suburb of Metairie. Officials declared the death a homicide Wednesday after an initial coroner’s report showed signs of strangulation.
However, Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand told reporters Thursday that investigators found no sign that anyone entered her apartment.
Coroner Gerry Cvitanovich (sih-TAN-oh-vich) said a review of the initial findings, in consultation with Ballon’s doctors, showed that markings on her neck and bleeding from her ear resulted from natural causes.
Ballon was in a home for seniors run by the Archdiocese of New Orleans, which issued a statement saying officials hope the news brings peace to the home’s residents.