Cold, chronic disease cause of woman’s death, authorities say

PORT TOWNSEND — A homeless woman was found dead after Monday’s chilly weather and snowstorm in Port Townsend, according to the Jefferson County Coroner/Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.

Prosecuting Attorney James Kennedy said in an email that “the cold was the acute cause” of Cassandra Aldrich’s death, adding that chronic disease was another major factor.

Temperatures in Port Townsend on Monday were in the 20s.

Paramedics from East Jefferson Fire-Rescue were sent to the wooded area behind the 2300 block of West Sims Way at 6:06 p.m., according to a press release Monday after a report of an unresponsive woman.

When paramedics arrived, they found Aldrich in a tent in the woods and she had a faint pulse.

Paramedics and police moved her to an ambulance for evaluation. She went into cardiac arrest. Subsequent CPR efforts were unsuccessful.

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