Fort Worth police are investigating a funeral home that allegedly left eight bodies, including two babies, in a building after being evicted.
The owner of the building on Handley Street made the discovery on Tuesday and called police. He said he had ordered the owners of Johnson Family Mortuary out two weeks ago.
The Tarrant County Medical Examiner on Wednesday identified all but one of the sets of remains that include six women and two fetuses - a boy and a girl.
The funeral home currently has five open complaints against its license, according to the Texas Funeral Commission in Austin. The license for the Johnson Family Mortuary expires on July 31 and will not be renewed, officials said.
Fort Worth police say the investigation that sparked after Tuesday’s discovery is of abuse of corpse, which is a felony. No charges had been filed as of Wednesday evening.
“And we have done nothing wrong, and you will see the end that we are right,” said Dondre Johnson, owner of Johnson Family Mortuary.
Dondre says he doesn’t believe he will face any charges.
“This is a funeral home; this is where dead bodies belong,” said Dondre. “So when you come in there, you’re gonna see dead bodies.”
Maria Vasquez was told by the Tarrant County Medical Examiner that one of the bodies found belonged to her mother, Victoria Vasquez, who was supposed to have been cremated.
"Imagine if that was his mother,” said Maria. “I mean, she was a beautiful woman. She didn't deserve any of this.”
After Victoria’s funeral five weeks ago, family members say that the funeral home them told her body would be cremated in two weeks and that the family would be given an urn -– neither of which has happened.
"What's going on?” said Victoria’s daughter, Elizabeth Vasquez. “Where is she? Is she OK? Why is he still taking my money to get an urn?"
The investigation makes the Vasquez family wonder about things they noticed during the funeral.
"There was a smell in there of just, a very bad, bad smell, and my family was like, ‘She's not supposed to be smelling like this,’” said Elizabeth. “She wasn't cold; she was warm.”
Millette King says the funeral home was supposed to have buried her mother.
“At the funeral, they didn’t allow me to see my mother going around,” said King. “They just told us to leave, so I don’t know if she’s still in there or what they did with her body.”
KDFW FOX 4
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