Bridgewater woman starves to death

June 1, 2023 4:30 pm in by


Coronial findings are out into a shocking case of starvation at Bridgewater early last year.

A woman, who’s been de-identified, was 71 and living alone as a hermit when police broke into her unit for a welfare check, finding her incoherent, malnourished and frail.

An officer submitted a report at end of shift but it didn’t reach Mental Health Services.

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Police attended again nearly a month later and found the woman deceased, an autopsy confirming she’d starved to death.

The coroner labelled the police decision to not call an ambulance on the first visit as “wrong”.

Tasmania Police advised the coroner it has since included extra instructions in its manual for contacting mental health services. 

“I note that, but for the response from Tasmania Police, I would have been minded to make a formal recommendation that Tasmania Police urgently review its procedures to ensure that upon submission of any
internal report detailing concerns in relation to the mental health and wellbeing of a member of the public the appropriate external agencies are notified,” said Coroner Simon Cooper.

Getty images

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