Bethlehem Woman, Allegedly Beaten by Son, Dies
Shirley Lindgren, 77, had been a school board member and volunteered for numerous community groups. Her son, Michael Lindgren, will be charged with homicide, police say.
A 77-year-old Bethlehem woman who police say was the victim of a vicious beating by her son died earlier today at St. Luke’s University Hospital in Fountain Hill, the Lehigh County Coroner said.
Shirley Lindgren, a former Bethlehem Area School Board member and a volunteer who helped start the Bethlehem Special Olympics, was pronounced dead at 11:45 a.m., said Lehigh County Coroner Scott Grim, who ruled the death a homicide. An autopsy will be performed on Thursday, Grim said.
Lindgren’s son, Michael Lindgren, 51, was charged in the beating that took place shortly after midnight Tuesday at 209 E. Wall St. in the city’s Central Historic District.
One of two charges of attempted homicide will be upgraded to homicide, Det. Lt. Mark DiLuzio told The Express-Times. The suspect is also accused of severely beating his father, John Ralph “J.R.” Lindgren, a retired Lehigh University professor who remained in serious condition at St. Luke’s this afternoon.
The investigation into the incident continued today. Police tape still surrounded the home, an officer stood watch outside and a police Forensics Unit van was still parked outside.
Lindgren was at police headquarters asking for help but left agitated before help was given. Several blocks away, police encountered Lindgren walking out of his parents’ house with his hands and shoes covered in blood.
“I had to kill them,” an officer heard him mutter, his arrest affidavit says.
The Morning Call has reported that there was an attempt to have Michael Lindgren committed to a mental health facility in July 2011, but that the details and the outcome of the request are not public records.
Shirley Lindgren was an active member of the Bethlehem Garden Club, worked at the polls on Election Day, formerly volunteered for Via of the Lehigh Valley and was also a volunteer tour guide for the Historic Bethlehem Partnership.