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Bodies Abandoned In Fort Worth Funeral Home Identified

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FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) - A day after eight decomposing bodies were found inside an abandoned funeral home, family members learned their loved ones were among those left behind.

Yvonne Stewart didn’t want to believe that her 70-year-old Aunt Helen Jones was among them, but the Tarrant County Medical Examiner confirmed it on Tuesday.

Stewart says Jones died three months ago.  She says the clothes selected for Jones funeral helped confirm her body was one of those left decomposing inside the Johnson Family Mortuary.

“The lady that we are looking at is dressed in the blue dress and gray scarf,” said Stewart, recalling her conversation with the coroner’s office.  “[That] was exactly how they dressed my aunt.”

(credit: Jones family)

(credit: Jones family)

The bodies of six adults and the fetal remains of two stillborn babies have been examined by the Tarrant County Medical’s Office.  The fetal remains will need to be identified by DNA.  Fingerprint comparisons were used to identify the following adults including Chewe Mwangilwa, 42, Patricia Baptiste, 90, Karen Jones, 60, and Victoria Vasquez, 53.  The process of identifying a 48-year-old woman is ongoing.

Elizabeth Vasquez received confirmation that her grandmother’s remains were also still inside, one month after she was scheduled for cremation.

(credit: Vasquez family)

(credit: Vasquez family)

“To know these people intentionally left her in there it hurts me, it’s disgusting,” said Vasquez.

The Johnsons, Dondre and his wife Rachel, were the operators of the mortuary before they were kicked out of the property a few weeks ago.  They have denied any negligence on their part.

On Wednesday, the property owner allowed CBS 11 cameras inside the business, where caskets, gurneys and makeup bags were left in disarray throughout the building.   Additionally, the potent smell of rotting flesh filled every room.

Although they deny responsibility, the Johnsons could face neglect and abuse of a corpse charges.  Police say the case is still under investigation.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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