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Long Beach Woman Slain in Her Home : Crime: Police believe a fire was ignited after the 75-year-old was beaten in an apparent robbery.


A 75-year-old woman--the apparent victim of a robbery and beating that left her bleeding and unconscious on the floor of her north Long Beach home--died of cardiac arrest early Wednesday at Memorial Hospital Medical Center in Long Beach, officials said.

Firefighters responding to a small blaze that the robber or robbers apparently set in the modest house in the 100 block of East Mountain View Street found Geneva Rose Dahlgren sprawled on the kitchen floor in her nightgown.

Ron Yukelson, a public information officer for the hospital, said the woman's upper body was covered with bruises. He said there were cuts and scrapes on her face and marks indicating that her wrists had been bound.

A telephone cord apparently used to tie her was found in a nearby trash can, investigators said.

Detective Roy Hamand of the Long Beach Police Department said a television set and stereo system were missing from the home, where the woman lived alone.

"We really didn't know her that well, but she was just a real friendly person," said a neighbor, Maryjo Cosgrove. "She would sit out on her porch and have a cigarette or water her yard, and she was always friendly whenever you went by."

Other neighbors, who asked not to be identified, said that a few weeks ago a man wearing a ski mask and armed with an ice pick broke into the house. They said the woman's screams scared the man away.

Since then, the neighbors said, Dahlgren usually kept her windows shut and her curtains drawn during the evening. However, they said she had left a window open while watching television Tuesday night.

The attack apparently occurred late Tuesday or early Wednesday. The woman, who was rushed to the hospital by ambulance, arrived there about 1:30 a.m. Wednesday. Hospital officials said she died about 18 minutes later.

Police said there were no witnesses to the attack, and no suspects have been identified.

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