WASHINGTON - Maryland State Police continue to investigate a mix-up involving cremated remains and say they are looking for other families who may be impacted.
D.C. resident Marc Inman found out from investigators in January that the ashes he believed belonged to his cousin, Lawanda Williams, who died in 2016, were not her. Police learned another family had her ashes based on a cremation tag in the remains.
"It was devastating," Inman said. "Because prior to receiving the call, we were actually scheduled to go out of town to spread the ashes."
Police returned the rightful ashes to Inman, but they are still trying to figure out whose remains he had initially. In that urn, there was no metal cremation tag.
It was Chambers Crematorium in Riverdale, Maryland, that did Williams' cremation. FOX 5 has been trying for weeks to talk to one of the owners, but no one has returned our calls.
According to state records, Chambers temporarily lost its license in 2010 after state investigators found a 12-foot pile of body bags strewn on the floor of the garage. Documents say that some identification tags were not attached to the bodies, and some tags were wet with fluids and illegible.
Chambers got its license reinstated later that year.
The funeral home Inman used is Shaun Reid Funeral Services. Reid referred FOX 5 to his attorney who said in a statement:
"Mr. Reid has not been contacted by the Maryland State Police, so he has no reason to believe the Reid Funeral Home is under investigation. When Mr. Reid receives remains from the crematorium, the identity of the decedent is provided by the crematorium. Mr. Reid ensures that the remains are then provided to the appropriate family. He has no reason to believe that any mix-up is the result of any action undertaken at his funeral home."
For now, police are not saying exactly who is under investigation.
Inman says he has never even gotten an apology for such a huge mistake. However, he is just glad someone figured it out.