Kaling Wald in court over husband's rotting body
The 50-year-old is charged with neglect of duty regarding a dead body and indignity to a body
A woman who police believe was living with her husband’s rotting corpse in their Hamilton home was back in court Thursday.
Kaling Wald, 50, appeared briefly at the John Sopinka Courthouse in Hamilton Thursday morning. She wore a beige sweater with glasses and had her shoulder length hair pinned back with an orange headband.
She didn’t speak during the proceedings. Two women sat with her in court.
- READ MORE: Kaling Wald charged after husband's decomposing body found in home
- READ MORE: Family lived with dead man in Hamilton house for months
Wald was arrested in January and charged with neglect of duty regarding a dead body and indignity to a body.
A foreclosure company employee found 51-year-old Peter Wald’s body when trying to evict Wald and his family from their St. Matthews Avenue home in the city’s north end back in September.
“It all has to do with the responsibilities of dealing with a dead body,” Det. Sgt. Steve Hrab told CBC Hamilton shortly after Wald’s arrest. “You are required to contact the authorities, the coroner, if someone passes away in their home. There are laws to the effect on how we deal with dead bodies.”
Regional coroner Dr. Jack Stanborough told CBC Hamilton in September that Wald’s body was in an “advanced state of decomposition” when it was discovered.
“Evidence suggests he’d been dead for weeks, if not months,” Stanborough said. As Wald's body was so decomposed, investigators will likely never know an exact cause of death. "But there was nothing in the examination that would suggest criminal activity or public health concerns," he said.
Examiners believe Wald likely died a natural death from a "significant, preexisting disease," Stanborough said. "It doesn't appear they were terribly interested in obtaining medical care."
Next-door neighbour Brenda Dennis said she believed Wald had been deceased for at least four months before his body was found.
She told CBC Hamilton that odd behaviour around the home started around that time, too. Hordes of flies could be seen around a second-floor window and birds were pecking at the screen. Peter Wald also couldn’t be seen outside around his prized blue Astro van anymore — which was painted with religious words and symbols.
Family members also started dancing and chanting while wearing black robes in the backyard — sometimes twice a day, said Dennis’s husband, Brian. The six Wald children also lived in the home during the time their father's body was there.
Kaling Wald was arrested at the Niagara Region home where the family moved after the body was discovered in September.
She is scheduled to be back in a Hamilton courtroom on March 27.
With files from Julia Chapman