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93-year-old widow dies of ‘broken heart syndrome’ caused by burglary

/ 02:24 PM August 26, 2019
Widow dies of 'broken heart' following burglary

93-year-old Betty Munroe’s health deteriorated after three burglars broke into her home and stole, among many valuables, her late husband’s watch. Image: Facebook/Northamptonshire Police

A ninety-three-year-old widow from Northamptonshire, England, passed away last Wednesday, Aug. 21, after three men burglarized her home in June and stole, among many valuables, her late husband’s watch, Northamptonshire Police said.

Betty Munroe’s home in Kettering Road North, Northampton, was burgalized by three men around 11 p.m. of June 11, as per the police on Aug. 22. The burglars used a pair of garden shears to break into Munroe’s home through the back door, and once inside, told her that they were police officers.


“They then stole all of her [jewelry], including her late husband’s watch, her purse, bank cards, and a gold chain from around her neck, ransacking the premises in front of her before making good their escape,” said the police.


The family of 93-year-old Betty Munroe has paid tribute to her in a statement released by Northamptonshire Police…

Northamptonshire Police 发布于 2019年8月22日周四

Munroe’s health deteriorated quickly following the burglary. As per authorities, she was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after the incident. She suffered repeated nightmares, had trouble sleeping, became sickly and unable to stop shaking. 

“Following a lengthy stay in hospital with heart trouble, she was eventually diagnosed with Takotsubo Syndrome, also known as broken heart syndrome, and passed away this week,” Northampshire Police said.

According to Harvard Women’s Health Watch, Takotsubo cardiomyopathy (a.k.a. Takotsubo Syndrome or broken heart syndrome) is the weakening of the heart’s left ventricle, usually as the result of severe emotional or physical stress. It occurs almost exclusively in women and is caused by stress from a sudden illness, the loss of a loved one, a serious accident, or a natural disaster, among others.

This is one of the saddest cases I have come across during my career and a stark reminder of how deeply a burglary can affect a victim,” said Simon Barnes, detective inspector of the Northampton Criminal Investigation Department. “Betty was in good health before this incident but she deteriorated very quickly after it and sadly died in her care home this week, surrounded by her family.” 

Munroe’s family said in a statement that the 93-year-old was happy and living independently in her home of 56 years before the incident.


“The violent actions of these callous individuals robbed her not only of precious possessions, but of her sense of security and peace and the will to go on,” Munroe’s family said. “All the generations of our family who owe her so much are bereft at her death.”

The burglars remain at large, as per authorities. JB


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TAGS: broken heart, broken heart syndrome, ‎Burglary, death, elderly, Northamptonshire Police, Takotsubo Syndrome
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