3-year-old survived for ‘several days’ after mother died inside apartment

EAST HARTFORD, Conn. -- Police are investigating after a woman was found dead in an apartment in East Hartford with her 3-year-old living inside.

A social worker arrived at the home on Monday and tried to enter. She was able to convince the child to unlock the door and let her in, according to WTIC. That's when the social worker found the 37-year-old woman dead inside and called police.

Police said the woman had been dead for "several days," but not did not know an exact time.

The child survived by eating cereal and believed her mother had been sleeping, according to Lt. Joshua Litwin. The child was taken to Connecticut Children's Medical Center to be checked out but was okay.

Susan Tash, who lives in the same apartment complex, said she was shocked to find out the woman had died.

“I realized that it’s right above me and it’s the girl who had the little baby who’s the same age as my granddaughter," said Tash.

Others in the apartment complex told WTIC they are struggling with the grisly news.

“I have four girls you know, I love to death. And it’s like a sad thing, you know," said neighbor Jermaine Hawkins. "I hate to hear that."

Police are not releasing the name of the woman at this time. East Hartford Police are now handling the investigation. The Department of Children and Families were also called to investigate.

The medical examiner's office will determine how the woman died.