KING, NC - A NC crematory has been suspended after an employee was found to have nearly a hundred containers of cremated human remains at his home, according to the King Police Department.
James Massie, an employee of Cremation Services Inc. in Winston-Salem, was responsible for disposing the remains, believed to be from unclaimed bodies.
According to the King Police Department, Massie, who was found to have 93 containers of cremated human remains at his home, claimed he was transporting the remains to dispose of due to lack of space at the crematory.
Investigators say he did have permission from his boss at the crematory to keep the remains at his home until they could be properly disposed of.
Cremation Services owner/manager Susanne Blair said she gave Massie permission to take the sets of human remains home with him because he planned to scatter them in the Blue Ridge Mountains the next day. She says he was trying to save time because he lives in King, on the way to the destination.
Bone fragments and cremated remains were found in a trash can for pickup on January 31 at Massie's home. King police confirmed the remains were human.
Blair says one of the containers used to store the remains had a hole in it, and a handful of human remains ended up on the ground. She later said Massie found the contents and put them in the trash, not realizing they were human remains.
"It was human error," Blair said Wednesday.
Blair says the North Carolina Board of Funeral Services issued an order for suspension on March 30. The hearing for this case is May 10 in Raleigh.
Massie is still an employee of Crematorium Services, and Blair says she has no plans to fire him.
The King Police Chief says no charges will be fired because no laws were broken. Under North Carolina law, crematoriums only have to keep ashes for 30 days unless you make an agreement with them before the body is burned. After that it doesn't matter where the ashes are kept because they aren't the crematorium's responsibility any more.
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