There are times when Houston receives international attention and we are all very proud. We welcomed those displaced by Hurricane Katrina. Just three years ago, our Astros made it to the World Series (I forget who won ...) And, let's be honest, what is one of the first words you think of when you see an astronaut? But then, there are other moments when some residents of the Houston area makes us all cringe. One of those instances happened in March when three teens were charged with the misdemeanor of abusing a corpse. The reason the young men found it necessary to disturb the long-resting skeleton? They wanted to use the skull as a bong.
According to Texas law, a person is guilty of abusing a corpse if he "without legal authority, knowingly disinters, disturbs, damages, dissects, in whole or in part, carries away, or treats in an offensive manner a human corpse." In the particular case involving these fine Houston youth, the corpse disturbed was that of an eleven-year-old boy who was buried in 1921.
One of the teens, Kevin Wade Jones, pleaded guilty to the charge yesterday and is now preparing to spend 240 days in county jail. Perhaps it's fitting that Jones is the first of the trio to admit to the crime, as it was his discussion with police that led to the grave site investigation. Jones was being questioned about a stolen credit card when he decided that the moment was right to share his other illegal activity as well. Was an attempt at distraction? Certainly after someone tells me, "I ripped the head off a dead person to smoke some dope," I might forget about the video games purchased with someone else's MasterCard.
We have criminal defense attorneys on stand by at Bertolino LLP who are ready to deal with any unusual charges you may be facing. Please feel free to get in touch with us at our Austin, Houston, or San Antonio office if we can be of service to you.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Posted by Tony R. Bertolino, Esq. at 11:28 AM