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Retail

Worker found dead in Belk department store bathroom after four days

ASouth Carolina employee died in a Belk department store during her shift Thursday, but she wasn't found until Monday evening.

Bessie Durham, 63, was working for an outside party that Belk contracts to clean its bathrooms at the time of her death. Durham never left the bathroom, according to surveillance video footage.

Columbia Deputy Police Chief Melron Kelly reported that Durham was found after her family filed a missing person report. Her cleaning cart was outside the bathroom when she was found.

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"We’re still working with the store to find out what their process is to closing down the store, inspecting the store, and things of that nature," Kelly said.

The store operated during its normal hours across the four days that Durham was in the bathroom. As of Wednesday, the store's bathroom has reportedly remained closed.

Lexington County Coroner Margaret W. Fisher has scheduled an autopsy for Thursday, but she already reported no indication of foul play or drug use. Fisher alluded that Durham's death came as a result of natural causes.

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It is unclear how many family members Durham leaves behind. Her neighbors reported seeing a couple of grandchildren coming to visit her home on occasion.