New York City Grandma Kept in Plastic Bags for Five Months Was Strangled: Medical Examiner

An investigation has determined a doting New York City grandmother whose corpse was left in bags for five months was strangled, months after saying her death was not suspicious.

In October, police found 85-year-old Erika Kraus-Breslin's body in her Ridgewood home after visiting to perform a wellness check at the bequest of her daughter. Her grandson Christopher Fuhrer, 30, led police to her corpse, which was wrapped in plastic bags.

He told officers he'd been living with his grandmother's corpse wrapped in the bags for five months, because he was afraid of becoming homeless. 

Police said at the time that the death didn't appear to be suspicious.

But a recent investigation has determined that the woman was strangled.

The medical examiner's office says Kraus-Breslin died of "homicidal asphyxia, including neck compression."

Fuhrer was arrested in October on improper burial and other charges. Police say he told them he wrapped her body in bags and used air fresheners and a fan to mask the smell of decomposition.

No one has been charged with killing her in light of the new information.

Toni Binanti, the owner of a nearby bakery where Kraus-Breslin worked for nearly two decades, said she adored Fuhrer.

"Out of all of her grandchildren, this was the one she talked about the most."

Fuhrer's attorney didn't immediately respond to a request Wednesday for comment on the case.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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