At least 189 decomposed bodies were removed from ‘green’ Colorado funeral home

“The total number of decedents could change as the identification and investigative processes continue,” the bureau said.

Fremont County coroner’s personnel will work to confirm the identities and notify families, CBI said. There is no timeline to complete those steps, it said.

Fremont County Coroner Randy Keller said in Tuesday’s statement: “We are conducting extensive coordination efforts as we focus on the identification of the decedents and provide notifications to ensure the families are given accurate information to prevent further victimization as they continue to grieve their loved ones.”

On Oct. 6, authorities announced that at least 115 bodies had been improperly stored at the funeral home.

Deputies were first sent to the building on Oct. 3 to investigate a “suspicious incident,” the sheriff’s office said in a news release.

The sheriff’s office searched the property with a warrant the next day. Investigators determined human remains were being improperly stored.

“Green Burial is a natural way of caring for your loved one with minimal environmental impact,” the funeral home’s website says, adding, “Green Burial aids in the conservation of natural resources, reduction of carbon emissions and the preservation of habitat, WITHOUT the use of harsh embalming chemicals, metallic, plastic or unnatural items.”

Green burials are legal under Colorado law. Remains that are not buried within 24 hours, however, must be properly refrigerated. 

Authorities said at a news conference Oct. 6 that no arrests had been made but that investigators were in contact with local and federal prosecutors.

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