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Friday, Oct 20, 2017
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Suspect arrested in slaying of 79=year-old Bradenton woman

A 32-year-old Bradenton man has been arrested in the death of a 79-year-old woman whose body was found in her apartment Friday, the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office said today.

Richard W. Matthews Jr. was charged with murder, burglary and grand theft auto in connection with the death of Helen Vanorden. Matthews knew of the victim through a family member of the victim, deputies said.

Vanorden’s body was found about 6 p.m. Friday by her son, Charles, at Burgundy Apartments, 204 46th Ave. Terrace W., according to deputies. He had last spoken to her on Thursday and went to check on her well-being..

An autopsy determined the death was a homicide, but the cause of death has not been released.

Deputies believe the motive was robbery, and say Matthews stole Vanorden’s car.

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