Police have confirmed jewellery was stolen from the Avondale house where an elderly woman was found dead.

Rampiari, 82, was found dead by a family member in her home on St Georges Road on Tuesday afternoon.

"Early indications are that Mrs Rampiari has likely died due to a medical event, but we are awaiting the results of further tests," Detective Senior Sergeant Mark Franich said.

Police believe she died sometime between 10:30am and 3:30pm.


Family members reported seeing belongings tossed about inside the house when they discovered Rampiari's body.

Now police have confirmed a burglary also took place at the home.

"There were a number of items taken in the burglary including the jewellery pictured in these photos. We are releasing them in the hope that someone will have information which can assist our investigation," Franich said.

A number of items taken in the burglary including the jewellery pictured in this photo. Photo / Supplied
A number of items taken in the burglary including the jewellery pictured in this photo. Photo / Supplied

However, at this stage there was no evidence to link Rampiari's tragic death to the burglary, he said.

"But we continue to keep an open mind as our investigation progresses," Franich said.

"We really need whoever was involved in this incident or those who have information to contact police urgently."

Police ask that anyone who witnessed suspicious activity in the St Georges Road area to call Avondale police on 09 302 6400.

The Herald understands the woman's son-in-law entered the house just before 4pm yesterday to find the woman lying dead on the floor, the house in disarray and belongings strewn on the ground.


The woman may have had a heart attack after thieves broke into her property, her grieving family believe.

Police had sealed off the house with two scene guards monitoring the front and rear of the property.

Close to 7pm, the family ushered each other into cars and drove off together before again gathering outside the house yesterday as police continued their investigation.

A neighbour told the Herald the woman lived at the house with relatives but was frail and could not move about easily.

She would spend time at home alone when other family members were at work.

The neighbour said the family were social and would visit other residents on the street to hand out sweets on Indian festivals such as Navaratri and Diwali.

The neighbour said he had spoken to the grieving family after the woman's body was discovered by a male relative earlier in the afternoon.

"He said somebody broke into the house and his mother had a heart attack and passed away."

The neighbour said it was a good area and this was the first time he know of something like this happening.

Tearful family members - understood to include the woman's children and grandchildren - spent hours embracing outside the weatherboard home and consoling each other after the body was found.

The family cat was also locked outside the home and waited with the family.

The woman's son-in-law told Stuff she was in good health and her death remains a mystery.

Her body was lying outside a bedroom and contents from the house were strewn over the floor.

"It's not a good scene man," said the man, who would only be identified as "Mr Ram".

He believed an intruder had broken into the home yesterday afternoon and the woman - who came to New Zealand in 2006 - is believed to have died shortly after.

Family friends Raj and Padma Manikam came out to visit the house yesterday in the hope of catching their good friend, the victim's son.

Raj Manikam said his old mate, who he knew from back home in Fiji, was crying when he phoned to break the news.

"He called me this morning and said, 'My mother passed away'.

"I thought I'd come to see him, see if he needs help."

Manikam said his friend, who works as a cleaner, had been living in New Zealand for about 14 years.

He brought his mother over sometime after arriving in the country.

"They're good people."