A bizarre and upsetting case from Georgia has attracted attention from coast to coast, as a pair of feuding exes argue over who has the right to move their son’s body.
Carin Manusuthakis from Macon says her son’s body was exhumed from its resting place in Georgia last month, then transported to a garage in Hawesville, Kentucky, eight hours away by car.
She called the police on her ex-husband, Stephen Newton, who had arranged for the infant boy’s casket to be dug up before driving it to the garage, which belongs to Newton’s father.
Manusuthakis told 14 News she wants her son “back where he belongs,” and says she never gave Newton her permission to move their son’s remains from the plot where he has lain in rest for almost three decades.
“There was no reason to disturb him,” she said. “That’s just terrible – you don’t do that.”
Newton, who admits to moving the body, says he didn’t break any laws, and that he was only trying to bury his son with relatives from his side of the family.
While Newton had to submit permits to the funeral home to move his son’s body, he says none of the forms required his ex-wife’s signature.
“I had all my paperwork done through the funeral home. I did not do anything other than go up there pick him up and transport him to Kentucky,” he told Local 7.
He also claims that when he floated the idea to Manusuthakis a year ago, she was “okay” with it.
“She didn’t know exactly when it was going to happen, and I really didn’t, either,” he said. “She’s denying now that she ever gave me permission to do it or anything else.”
Newton says he has purchased a plot in a Hawesville cemetery for his son, and the remains is only being stored in the garage until his new resting place is prepared.
Police in both states have opened investigations into the case, but if Newton is right about his paperwork being on the level, he could be allowed to keep the body.
A public affairs officer with the Kentucky State Police told 11 News that a case like this is “uncharted.”
For now, the boy’s casket has been placed with the coroner in Hancock County, Kentucky as police continue to investigate.
[H/T: 14 News]