Victim often seen smoking in bed

Victim often seen smoking in bed
A fire at Owen Road killed an 92-year-old wheelchair-bound lady in her one-room flat on Oct 2. She was engulfed by flames while on her bed. According to a worker at the Seniors Activity Centre at the void deck, she was a smoker who always smoked while on her bed.

She was a habitual smoker who often lit up while on her bed.

Was this what caused the fire that killed the wheelchair-bound P. Lakshmi, 92, at her one-room rental flat? Residents think so.

Last Wednesday, a fire ravaged her apartment at about 5.30pm at Block 47, Owen Road. She is believed to have been on her bed at that time.

Madam Lakshmi lived there with her maid, who was not in the apartment when the fire occurred.

The maid has been asked by the police to undergo a polygraph lie detector test, reported The Straits Times on Saturday.

The Sri Lankan maid, known only as Rani, is believed to be the last person to see Madam Lakshmi alive.

Polygraph evidence remains inadmissible in court, but law enforcement agencies here have reportedly been using the instrument since 1977 to assess the credibility of witnesses and suspects.

The maid had been living with Madam Lakshmi in the flat for the past six years.

Neighbours believe Madam Lakshmi's disability might have prevented her from escaping the fire. Chinese evening daily Lianhe Wanbao previously reported that the fire was likely to have been caused by a short circuit in the flat.

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