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Funeral home mistakenly cremated baby's body, lawsuit alleges

September 2, 2011 |  1:29 pm

Casket photo 
A man said he was fired from his job at an Inglewood mortuary after complaining that his employers had cremated a baby’s body without the parents’ permission and disguised their actions by putting a rock in the casket “to give it the weight of a baby’s body.”

Jonathan Ford said in a wrongful-termination lawsuit that he was fired from his job at Simpson Family Mortuary "in retaliation for his complaints" about the concealed cremation.

Ford filed the lawsuit Wednesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court. He asked for his job back, lost wages and unspecified punitive damages.

Curtis Simpson, the mortuary’s owner, disputed Ford’s allegations. He said he fired Ford for stealing money from the mortuary. The allegations about the baby’s cremation was "a bunch of lying and foolishness," Simpson said.

"We would not have a service without a family going in to see a body and make sure it’s the right body," he said. "If they don’t come in, we don’t have a funeral."

Ford worked at the mortuary from October 2007 until September 2010, the lawsuit said.

Neither Ford nor his attorneys could be immediately reached for comment.

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-- Stuart Pfeifer

Photo: Casket covered with flowers Credit: Associated Press 

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