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Man, 82, Found Dead After Fire At Staten Island Home; Police Believe He Was Beaten

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- An 80-year-old man was found dead with head trauma Wednesday when police responded to a fire at a home on Staten Island, and sources said police believe he was beaten by a woman found alive at the scene.

Police and paramedics responded to the fire in the garage at 405 Victory Blvd. in the Tompkinsville section of Staten Island around 12:35 p.m.

Once the FDNY put out the fire, personnel found the body of the 80-year-old man in a bathtub in the first-floor bathroom in the house. He had suffered trauma to the head, police said.

A 67-year-old woman in the home was taken to Richmond University Medical Center, where her condition was reported as stable, police said. She was being treated for smoke inhalation and was in police custody while hospitalized, police said.

Police identified the man late Wednesday as Frank Baldassare.

Sources told CBS 2 police believe the woman beat the man in the head of the crowbar, and claimed she did so after years of abuse.

It was not clear whether the abuse was physical or verbal. Sources said police confirm a history of domestic calls to the address involving the couple.

Police alleged the woman set the garage on fire with herself inside in a suicide attempt after the man was killed.

Other than the domestic calls, police did not have any arrest history for the older man.

The Fire Marshal will determine the cause of the blaze, and the New York City Medical Examiner's office will determine the final cause of the man's death, police said.

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