Mystery death teenager's organs removed and body stuffed with NEWSPAPER - but funeral home NOT at fault
The family of a teenager who died in mysterious circumstances were left devastated after discovering his organs had been removed and his body stuffed with NEWSPAPER.
Kendrick Johnson, 17, was found dead inside a rolled up wrestling mat at his school gym in Georgia in January 2012.
Authorities closed their investigation into the teenager's death, saying he fell head-first into the upright mat and became trapped in a tragic freak accident.
But following a campaign by Kendrick's parents, who insist he was killed, a judge agreed to exhume the boy's body last summer.
A post mortem examination by a private pathologist determined Kendrick died of blunt force trauma to the neck, CBS News reported.
But, in a further blow to his heartbroken parents, it was also discovered that the teenager's organs were missing and his body had been stuffed with newspaper.
An investigation by the Georgia Secretary of State found Harrington Funeral Home, in Valdosta, did NOT violate any rules in how they handled the boy's body.
Jared Thomas told CBS that a letter of concern was issued to the funeral home on behalf of the Georgia Funeral Board, asking them to “update their practices.”
It remains unclear what happened to Kendrick's organs, but the funeral home admitted to using newspaper to stuff the body, saying it is in conformity with burial protocol.
Johnson family lawyer Ben Crump told CBS Crimesider that, although the parents are disappointed that the funeral home cannot be held criminally responsible, it is "far less important than the critical issue of them discarding or destroying his organs."