PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A funeral director has been arrested and charged with abuse of a corpse months after three decomposing bodies were found in her garage.
Janet Powell-Dailey, 72, was taken into custody Thursday, according to the Philadelphia Police Department. Powell-Dailey ran Powell Funeral Home and owned the adjacent garage in the Strawberry Mansion neighborhood in north Philadelphia.
Police were called to the garage in August after neighbors investigating a foul odor stumbled upon the bodies. One was in a coffin and two others were in cardboard body boxes.
A detective testified at a September hearing over Powell-Dailey’s license that the corpses were covered in hundreds of maggots and one was so badly decomposed it was partially liquefied, according to a report in The Philadelphia Inquirer.
The funeral home, which had been in Powell-Dailey’s family for decades, had been operating without a license since 2012.
Her son, Chris Dailey, told the Inquirer in August that the bodies wound up in the garage over a “misunderstanding.” He defended his mother as a solid businesswoman who stuck it out in the neighborhood when so many businesses moved elsewhere.
Online court records don’t list an attorney for Powell-Dailey.