NewsLocal News


At least 12 decomposing bodies, 50 fetuses found inside south Idaho funeral home

Posted at 9:46 AM, Sep 08, 2021

POCATELLO, Idaho (AP) — Authorities have positively identified five bodies found at a Pocatello, Idaho, funeral home that is under investigation and are working to identify seven others and the remains of approximately 50 fetuses have been turned over to the Ada County Coroner.

The Downard Funeral Home was being scrutinized by police after a state health inspector contacted them about the business.

The East Idaho News reports the Pocatello Police Department is working the Bannock County Coroner’s Office to contact family members of the deceased.

“At this time, detectives believe that decedents who were scheduled to be buried were buried, and the unidentified individuals that were found had been scheduled for cremation,” a news release says. “The remains of approximately 50 fetuses found at the scene are now in the custody of the Ada County Coroner for further investigation.”

The Idaho State Journal reports the owners of the Downard Funeral Home have not publicly commented on the investigation.

Police have received hundreds of tips and requests for information since news broke Friday that multiple decomposing bodies and fetuses were found inside Downard Funeral Home.

The business was previously in charge of donating cadavers to Idaho State University for scientific study but the relationship ended last year after the university had stopped receiving donations for a period of time.

In the process of ending the relationship, the university discovered some families believed the remains of their loved ones had already been donated. However, the university had no record of receiving those bodies.