Authorities are investigating the death of a 75-year-old Putnam County woman as a homicide, though they declined to elaborate on what prompted responding officers to assume she had been killed.
Officials got a call reporting a medical emergency at Pearla Gatchalian's home in Mahopac around 3:15 p.m. Thursday. Mahopac EMS volunteers responded, along with cops from the Carmel Police Department.
Authorities released no additional details, saying only Gatchalian was found dead in her home. A medical examiner will conduct an autopsy to determine how she died. State Police are assisting in the investigation.
Troopers had the street completely cordoned off to non-residential traffic Friday morning, and officers were seen canvassing the area with police dogs. Neighbors said police knocked on their doors Thursday night asking if anyone had seen or heard anything.
Residents say criminal activity of this nature would be an anomaly in the normally quiet neighborhood.
Police Chief Mike Cazarri, while declining to say whether they've identified a suspect or motive, is assuring residents they are not in danger.
"People should no go about their lives different than they did before," he said.
Anyone with information on Gatchalian's death is asked to call the Carmel Police Department at 845-628-1300.