His Bills Were Being Paid, So No One Knew He Died—in 2011

Dead man found in apartment in Oslo, Norway
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 9, 2021 8:13 AM CDT
Updated Apr 11, 2021 4:00 PM CDT
He Died at Home in 2011. His Body Was Just Found
Oslo, Norway.   (Unsplash/Oscar Daniel Rangel)

Norway police are asking how the body of a man could've sat in his apartment in the capital for almost a decade without anyone noticing. The body was discovered in December when a caretaker opened the Oslo apartment for maintenance work, reports the BBC. Police believe the retired man in his 60s died of natural causes on or around April 29, 2011—the day Prince William married Kate Middleton. The most recent letter in the apartment had that date, reports public broadcaster NRK. A carton of milk in the fridge would've expired a week later. The man had been married several times and had children, but no one reported him missing. "Based on the picture we have, it is obviously a person who has chosen to have little contact with others," Oslo police inspector Grete Lien Metlid tells NRK, per the BBC.

Neighbors, who said the man kept to himself, thought he might've moved. The Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration halted the man's pension checks in 2018 after being unable to make contact with him. But his bills continued to be paid automatically from his bank account. "In a way, it is the price we have paid to get digital services," Norwegian University of Science and Technology professor Arne Krokan tells NRK, per the Local. "All his expenses were paid automatically … so if something strange happens, it's possible nobody will notice." While this is an extreme case, 27 people were found in or near Oslo at least seven days after their deaths in 2020, per the Local. In 2019, the number was 32. One of those people had been dead for seven months. (More Norway stories.)

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