Father denies wrongdoing in exhuming son’s body

Posted at 1:06 PM, Jan 08, 2019

KENTUCKY (WFIE) –  A Kentucky man has admitted to exhuming his son’s body, without his ex-wife’s permission, 27 years after he was buried in Macon, Georgia.

In a phone interview, Stephen Newton said he simply wanted his son, Wesley Newton, to be buried with family.

So, he bought a plot of land at Serenity Hills Cemetery in Hawesville, Kentucky, and contacted the funeral home in Georgia to tell them what he wanted.

“I’m not guilty of anything,” said Newton. “Because like I originally told you, I called the funeral home and told them what I wanted to do, they handled everything.”

Newton says FairHaven Funeral Home in Macon, Georgia arranged all the necessary permits to exhume the body on December 21. Newton claims he picked up his son’s body the next day, drove to Hawesville, and arrived on Christmas Eve.

He says he put the body in his father’s garage until the family planned to bury the remains. But once his ex-wife found out, Newton says things took a turn.

“She was okay with the idea about a year ago,” said Newton. “She didn’t know exactly when it was about to happen and I really didn’t either. She’s denying now that she ever gave me permission to do it or anything else.”

According to Georgia law, both parents would need to sign permits to move their child. When asked for the permits, Newton sent permit requests instead. When asked again for the permit, he could not produce them.

“Nobody ever mentioned that there possibly being a Georgia law that states that she has to sign too,” Newton said.

Right now, the body is with the Hancock County coroner in Kentucky, authorities in both states are investigating the incident.

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