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St. Petersburg cemetery moves bodies, after grave mistakes

8 On Your Side

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) – Royal Palm South Cemetery is moving bodies, after a Better Call Behnken investigation discovered grave mistakes.

Eight months after Cheryl Maxwell passed away, her gravesite is finally ready for her to be laid to rest. Her body has sat in a mausoleum, after the cemetery discovered they had mistakenly buried another woman next to Maxwell’s husband, in her prepaid spot.

“This just shouldn’t have happened because they knew about this so far in advance, and they did nothing,” Maxwell said.

The daughter of the other woman contacted Better Call Behnken to say her mother’s body was moved last week. She said it was gut-wrenching to watch the casket removed from the ground and lowered into a new spot.

The owner of Royal Palm south owns other cemeteries that are all in question: Royal Palm Cemetery South, Royal Palm Cemetery North in St. Petersburg, and Sarasota Memorial.

The cemeteries are in bankruptcy and under the control of a court-appointed trustee. Progress is slow for families who claim their concerns of neglect have been ignored for years.

Meanwhile, state officials are investigating the situation with Maxwell’s gravesite.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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