Authorities said Susan Carter, 43, of Flory Gardens Apartments in South Toledo, had been released from jail Sunday morning and apparently did not go back to her apartment. She was found partially clothed and sitting up on the bench about 7 a.m. Tuesday, said Steve Kahle, a Lucas County coroner's investigator. Mr. Kahle said it was unclear how long the woman was on the bench.
Although Ms. Carter was found only partially clothed, police said they do not suspect foul play. It's not unusual for someone suffering from a medical episode to feel hot or constricted and to take off his or clothing, said police Sgt. Phil Toney.
"The way she had to die was shocking," said Joanne Carter, 68, the mother of the victim's husband, Jerrett Carter of Springfiled Township. "I was very sorry. I cried."
About 8 p.m. Saturday, police arrested Ms. Carter at the Lucas Metropolitan Housing Authority complex where she had been living. She was charged with disorderly conduct while intoxicated after she allegedly "yelled obscenities at other residents in the community center" while highly intoxicated, according to an affidavit filed at Toledo Municipal Court.
She was booked into the Lucas County jail about 9:18 p.m., according to jail records. She was released six hours later because of jail overcrowding.
A person driving to work Tuesday morning noticed the woman on the bench on the grounds of the library, which is at the intersection of Adams and North Michigan streets. She thought it was suspicious that the woman was there by herself at such an early hour and called police, Sgt. Joe Heffernan said.
Linnie Willis, LMHA's executive director, said the woman was not barred from returning to her apartment, and there was no record of her returning after her arrest.
Joanne Carter said her son and his wife lived together three or four years until the woman allegedly left him "a few years ago."
Before that, Susan was employed at area gas stations as a sales clerk, she said.
Susan Carter filed for divorce Feb. 6, according to Lucas County records.
The couple had no children, said Joanne Carter, who said Sue Carter "was a loving person," adding, "Before my daughter passed away, she helped take care of her."
Joanne Carter's daughter Janelle Carter died of multiple sclerosis at age 40, the woman said.
Charles Cross, 52, Susan Carter's next-door neighbor, said, "She was good people. She never gave me any problems. She lived by herself. And she always said 'Hi.' "
Sergeant Toney said officials were working to view security footage at the library.
Rhonda Sewell, library spokesman, said Ms. Carter was at the library on Monday and, according to a library incident report, paramedics were called when the woman was having a "health issue" at 3:04 p.m.
Ms. Sewell said she could not comment further on what the issue was. Ms. Carter declined treatment.
Police also said Ms. Carter, when she was found on the bench, had a library book with her.
Ms. Sewell, citing patron privacy rules, said she could not comment on what the book was.
There was no indication from library employees that Ms. Carter was a regular patron or that anyone at the library had a personal relationship with her.
Staff writer Taylor Dungjen contributed to this report.
Contact Mike Sigov at: sigov@theblade,com or 419-724-6089.