A 68-year-old woman killed her elderly roommate inside their Sheepshead Bay apartment, leaving the body on the floor next to the door while she and another roommate wiled the week away binge drinking, cops from the 61st Precinct allege. Investigators said that Virginia Vain of 1213 Avenue Z was taken into custody on January 13, charged with murder in the second degree and criminal possession of a weapon for allegedly killing 66-year-old Rhea Breitbard. Breitbard was found dead inside their apartment at 1:50 p.m. on January 11. She was apparently stabbed multiple times, suffering wounds to her face and body, police said. As of this writing, police did not disclose a motive behind the killing. When questioned by police, Vain allegedly said that she had killed Breitbard in self defense, although her claims do not reflect the charges. During Wednesdays 61st Precinct Community Council meeting, Lt. Paul Putowski told residents that Breitbards corpse may have been lying in her apartment for about a week. Breitbard, Lt. Putowski said, lived with two other seniors, who were reportedly found in the apartment when someone concerned about the smell coming from the apartment called 911. When the call went out, EMS got their first, Putowski said. When we get there they [EMS] tells us that two people were in the apartment with the victim. Those two people were found and brought to the squad for questioning. It looked like they had been drinking for quite a few days and it looked like the body had been in the apartment for a few days, he said. A source close to the investigation allegedly described the two roommates as all elderly and possibly emotionally disturbed. A cop close to the case said that when EMS arrived, they found the body about a foot from the door. I dont know if they even left, the cop said. If they went to the store, they would have had to move the body to clear the door. Wednesdays stabbing was the first murder to take place in this 61st Precinct in 2006, police said. Seven homicides were investigated in 2005, officials said.
©2006 Community News Group
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