LA Sheriff’s Department Mourns Mysterious Death of Retired Detective

By City News Service
City News Service
City News Service
September 21, 2021 Updated: September 21, 2021

LOS ANGELES—The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Tuesday was mourning the death of a retired homicide detective whose body was found inside a freezer in the garage of her Riverside home.

The sheriff’s department confirmed that Miriam E. Travis, 87, was a 27-year employee of the agency, retiring in 1990 as a detective sergeant. She worked in the department’s Homicide Bureau for 11 years.

“Our hearts are broken by this news and the entire LASD family mourns her loss,” Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said in a statement Tuesday.

Riverside police said the body was discovered when officers went to the residence in the 6000 block of New Ridge Drive about 9:35 a.m. Sunday to conduct a welfare check on the woman, who lived there with a daughter.

Riverside police Officer Javier Cabrera said relatives from out of state had called police to report they hadn’t heard from the woman in a couple of months.

Officers interviewed the woman’s daughter, identified by The Press-Enterprise only as Carol, and noted some inconsistencies in her statements, Cabrera said. They subsequently found the body in a freezer in the garage of the residence, Cabrera said.

The daughter was interviewed by police, but was not arrested, and she was released pending further investigation, Cabrera said.

Neighbors and relatives told The Press-Enterprise that Travis and her daughter lived a reclusive existence in the neighborhood, and she had largely cut off contact with her family following the death of her husband in 1992.

Authorities told the paper the house was disheveled, with piles of trash inside and hoarding conditions, accompanied by a foul odor.