• Cops discovered the body after the couple's sons requested a wellness check
  • The wheelchair-bound 84-year-old man is suspected to have died two months ago
  • Elizabeth Shapiro, 72, told cops she planned on waiting a year before reporting his death

An elderly man’s decomposing remains were found amidst a pile of garbage inside a Brooklyn apartment. His wife told cops she had planned to wait a year before reporting his death, officials said Monday.

Elizabeth Shapiro, 72, had not called 911 after her husband, Brent Shapiro, 84, died of arteriosclerotic cardiovascular disease, police said. Cops believe Brent passed away at least two months before they discovered his body during a wellness check, according to the New York Post.

The couple’s worried sons, aged 45 and 41, had called 911 and asked authorities to check on their parents. They described the couple as mentally ill and said they hadn’t met them since 2019, police said. The 911 call led to officers showing up at the couple’s third-floor apartment on Coney Island Ave. near Glenwood Road in Midwood at 7 p.m. Saturday.

The apartment was so crammed that cops had to resort to using the fire escape to enter their bedroom. It took about two hours since arriving at the scene for cops to find Brent’s remains in the clutter, as reported by New York Daily News.

“Floor to ceiling, classic hoarder situation,” a police source said. “Feces, all sorts of debris. He was found on a pile of garbage.”

Despite living in a trash-filled apartment, the couple’s neighbor said Elizabeth was often seen sweeping the sidewalk outside their building.

“She used to sit outside and clean the street because the pigeons pooped. She sat outside and ate ice cream in the summer,” said a neighbor, who preferred to stay anonymous.

Elizabeth occasionally “cleaned up snow and garbage in the front,” the neighbor added.

Those who knew the couple also said Elizabeth did not speak much about her husband. They would rarely see Brent around but did not think much of it because he used a wheelchair and lived on the building’s upper floor. They simply thought it would be a challenge for Elizabeth to bring him down.

While speaking to cops, Elizabeth said she had planned on waiting a year before reporting her husband’s death to authorities, the police said. Officials took her to a hospital for psychiatric observation.

“It’s tough for someone to live in that situation, and with a dead body,” said a neighbor. “I don’t know what she was going through.”

Representative image Credit: Pixabay