Dallas homicide detectives are investigating the theft of an air-conditioning unit from a home where a 79-year-old woman later died of a heat-related illness.
Delores Grissom reported her A/C unit stolen on July 14. Temperatures were already in the triple digits, which made the inside of her Oak Cliff home feel much like the inside of a car parked outside.
Her son, Charles Bowers, found her unresponsive two days later. Paramedics pronounced her dead early July 17.
Bowers, who lived with his mother, described the temperature inside their home as "stifling."
Grissom took medication for diabetes and used a walker but was fairly self-sufficient, her son said.
Homicide detectives are investigating the case. Because she had other health problems, police are awaiting more information from the Dallas County Medical Examiner's office to see if they can charge someone with a charge greater than theft if they make an arrest.
Bowers said he was "bitter, hurt, lost" about his mother's death.
He said that if someone is arrested, the charge should acknowledge his mother's death.
"They ought not bring this kind of pain on nobody else, of that I'm certain," Bowers said.
He said that he understands air-conditioner thefts are common, especially during a heat wave. His mother's A/C was also stolen in 2008. Her air-conditioner was caged, but it did not stop thieves last month.