Birmingham & Black Country

Hall Green burglar 'walked over dead body' during raid

Jean Whitmore Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption Jean Whitmore lay dead on the floor as Carl Port burgled her home

A burglar "must have known" he was walking over a dead woman in order to steal her most valuable belongings, police said.

Carl Port, 50, broke into the home of 81-year-old Jean Whitmore as she lay dead on her living room floor in Rydal Way, Hall Green, on 26 April.

Ms Whitmore had died of natural causes about 10 days before Port raided her home.

He was jailed for six years for fraud and burglary at Birmingham Crown Court.

Detectives were called to investigate the death as a possible murder, but a post-mortem examination found she died from natural causes and placed the date of death somewhere between 15 and 16 April.

Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption Carl Port used Ms Whitmore's bank card several times following the burglary

Police discovered Ms Whitmore's bank card was used 12 times after her death and got in touch with her bank to cancel the card.

His home and campervan were searched and three jars full of Ms Whitmore's jewellery were found inside.

Port, of Hamlet Road, Hall Green, pleaded guilty to 11 counts of fraud, but denied burglary. He was convicted of that charge at Birmingham Crown Court and sentenced on Monday.

Speaking after the case, Det Con Alan Reeves, said: "Port must have known that she was dead, as he would have walked over her in order to get into the house and steal her most valuable belongings.

"It's truly shocking that he didn't call for help or let anyone know that she'd died. It's even more shocking that he continued to use her bank card up until it was cancelled six days later."

In a statement released by Ms Whitmore's family they said she was "such a proud lady and she wouldn't want to bother anybody".

"When Jean passed away we were shocked to find out not only that she'd died but had in fact been burgled in her own home as she lay deceased. It was truly shocking."

Follow BBC West Midlands on Facebook, on Twitter, and sign up for local news updates direct to your phone.

Related Topics

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites