What a nasty (and bizarre) way to die

[The body of Jacquelyn Kotarac was found on Saturday, three days after she slid feet first down the chimney of the Bakersfield home, police said.

“The pressure being placed on the chest wouldn’t allow her lungs to expand and she suffocated,” Kern County sheriff-coroner spokesman Ray Pruitt said after an autopsy.](http://www.theage.com.au/world/lover-died-of-asphyxiation-in-boyfriends-chimney-coroner-20100902-14nx8.html?autostart=1)

This sort of thing sounds like my nightmare. Then again, I don’t think I’m likely to be trying to sneak into someone’s house using the chimney.

Ugh, my nightmare too. so I shall add this to list of unpleasant ways to die that I am likely to avoid, well most of us are really.

Seriously, had she never seen Gremlins?

It was the night before Thursday, and all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse
The stalker was stuck in the chimney sans air
and her target had cautiously slept elsewhere…

That woman sounds insane. First she tries to break into the house with a shovel, then slides down the damn chimney? Who does that? Also: probably not the best way to convince your ex-boyfriend to take you back.

At its widest point the chimney was only 18 centimeters? I wouldn’t be able to get in up to my thighs.

She’s definitely showing the ex-miss spirit.

I remember reading about a crook who went down store’s chimney intending to rob it, only he hit a pipe in the middle of the chimney right between his legs. Was stuck there from Saturday night till Mondy morning with black and blue testicles the size of grapefruits.

So, she was unable to flee through a flaw in the flue?

The one where the guy fell in the big vat of manure or sewage and suffocated/drowned is still the worse, IMO.

This confuses me.

So, the man knew she was trying to sneak in, snuck out himself and slept elsewhere, but never called the police? I mean, I can see not wanting to hurt someone’s career, but when somebody takes a shovelt o your house, it’s time to speak up.

I have a sneaking suspicion that he knew she was int he chimney. I mean, he left, and hired a housesitter?!?

Police said Dr Kotarac, a 49-year-old internist, wanted to confront the man with whom she had an “on-again, off-again” relationship.

Some years ago, a burglar’s remains were found in a chimney in Natchez, Mississippi.

I confess that I e-mailed the link in the OP to a colleague, under the heading “When Internists Go Bad”.

My head would barely fit in 18 cm, and that’s the widest? Nobody’s shoulders or hips could fit.

And didn’t anybody see the ladder?

38 x 18 cm or 15 x 7.1 in.

I dunno, suffocating right away sounds easier than what would happen to you if you spent a day or so in a chimney in Bakersfield heat. I’m betting you’d die in some sort of slow heat-induced fashion.

Well, a woman died so it must somehow be a man’s fault.

Why jump to the conclusion that he did an unspeakably cruel thing, when the more reasonable explanation is that he didn’t know she was there.

It’s possible, but I think a more plausible explanation is that he found out (through noises, finding the shovel, etc.) that she was trying to get in, but had assumed she had left. He didn’t feel threatened by her, so he didn’t call the police, but he also didn’t want to deal with her in the likely chance that she returned. So he took off for a while and had someone keep an eye on things.