Neighbors of a woman found dead and partly decomposed Thursday in a North Carson home said her caretaker, who is being held on suspicion of abuse, had been living there for nearly two years.
They said Kelly Sue Hein, 33, moved into 4722 Blackrock Court when 79-year-old Iris Barton's husband died. The two have lived together since, with Hein ostensibly taking care of Barton, said the neighbors, who requested anonymity.
"This is such a great neighborhood, I was mortified," one neighbor said. "When I heard what happened, I almost fell over."
Hein was accused of elder abuse causing bodily harm, grand larceny and forgery, deputies said.
The neighbors said after the body was discovered in an upstairs bedroom at 6:30 p.m., the street was swarming with uniformed and plain-clothes officers.
Probation officers, searching for a man who had been known to stay with Hein, discovered the body when they smelled the decomposition and searched of the home.
The neighbors described Hein's domestic situation as "odd," saying she had lived in a home next door with her husband and children prior to moving in with Barton.
Hein's husband continues to live in the house next door, but contact between the couple appeared to be limited to visitation by the couple's children. The Heins' have two children.
Hein also had a live-in boyfriend, according to his sister. The boyfriend had lived there for the last three weeks but claimed to know nothing about the death, despite being in the house with Barton's corpse, his sister said.
The boyfriend asked about the smell, but "(Hein) said Iris had accidents, and she would open up the front doors and burn candles," the sister said.
Prior to living with Hein and Barton's body, the boyfriend had been living in Laughlin, his sister said. Hein had driven there to pick him up at the beginning of July, the sister said. The road trip took several days, she said. Hein told investigators Barton died June 27 of natural causes.
Chief Deputy Scott Burau of the Carson City Sheriff's Department said the department was looking into the family relationships, but there are currently no other suspects in the abuse case.
The neighbors said they suspected that the initial arrest was drug-related because of traffic that they have seen in and out of the house at odd hours. Burau said no drug charges were filed.