If you’re wondering why there are no photos of the foyer in this listing for the ranch home at 8402 Glenscott St. in the southeast Houston neighborhood of Meadowbrook Freeway, it’s likely out of respect. Because that’s the room where Sybil Berndt, the previous owner of this 3-bedroom, 2-bath home, fell, lay still face down on the floor for 3 days, passed away, and then slowly decomposed over the course of 3 months, all while her twin 48-year-old sons Edwin and Edward carried on with their lives, staying inside and watching TV and eating popcorn, potato chips, and candy.
There was a brief period after their mother fell, 2 days before her 89th birthday, when the twins considered getting her to a hospital, but they worried they might not be able to pay for her medical bills, according to investigators. Later, they worried how they might pay for her funeral. (It appears their mother had more than enough money to cover both.) Their mother, according to the twins’ account, never asked for help.
“They lived in squalor. The house was a place you wouldn’t expect humans to live,” the twins’ defense attorney, Robert Scardino, told an abc13 reporter shortly after a grand jury declined to indict them for their mother’s death, at least partly on account of issues related to their mental health. (They’ve since been put under the care of a guardian.)
But 3 years later, it appears that the place has been cleaned up nicely!
It is truly amazing what a (sadly, uncredited) cleanup crew can do — along with a little paint and carpet replacement. Unfortunately, the listing isn’t set up to communicate anything about the smell.
When police officers found Berndt’s decayed body in April 2011, the air conditioning had been turned off, according to police reports. “Putrid and deplorable,” were the words HPD officer R. Torres used to describe the stench of rotting flesh in the home. “You normally wouldn’t be able to withstand that smell for more than one minute, two at the most, without heaving your insides out,” he told the Chronicle‘s Anita Hassan.
The 1958 home, which county tax records show is now owned by a special needs trust, was first listed for sale last week, but photos were only posted over the weekend. Asking price for the 1,989-sq.-ft. property: $105,000.
- 8402 Glenscott St. [HAR]
- Twins Accused in Mother’s Murder No-Billed [abc13]
- Twins arrested after mother’s body found in home [Houston Chronicle]
- Previously on Swamplot: No Indictment for Twins Who Left Mom Alone; The House on Glenscott St. Where Mama Fell and Couldn’t Get Up; At Home in Meadowbrook Freeway
The guys that do that sort of cleanup have some amazing stories: http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/1imk51/im_a_crime_scene_cleaner_ama/
It was pretty clear from the lack of prosecution and sad circumstances surrounding this case that these two men suffer from severe intellectual disability. While disclosure about the tragedy is certainly necessary from a real estate and business point of view – and I grant you from a human interest angle as well – do we really need a snark level of 11? Did you want us to throw up while reading the story, or were we just supposed to laugh at the misfortune of this family.
I cannot imagine the stress of the uncertainty of what might happen to your disabled children if they are likely to outlive you. While this mother endured the difficulties of raising these sons, maybe she found some comfort knowing that a modest trust could be created for their care from selling the house when she died. Kudos to her for all of her hard work and may she rest in peace.
That’s just rotten.
the tone of the poster makes me ill……..
dbghouston ….. so true…
There was another home in the area that sold a few months back that was the scene of a murder suicide. The house was listed for$175, then lowered to $150…..after the house sold it was flipped and listed for over $230k and sold really fast. From my understnding the owner is only responsible for disclosing what happens while the property is under their ownership. With that being said someone will most likely purchase this house and never have a clue about what happend untill a neighbor brings it up.