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Crematorium Owner Arraigned for Improper Disposal of Dead Bodies

LANSING - Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel has charged the owner of Tri-County Crematorium in Ypsilanti Township following improper handling of a decedent. 

O'Neil Swanson was arraigned Monday in Washtenaw County's 14-A District Court via Zoom, according to his attorney.

He's charged in 14-B District Court with one count of improper disposal of dead bodies, a 10-year felony that carries a maximum of a $50,000 fine. Swanson is also charged as a second habitual offender.

"The allegations against Mr. Swanson are incredibly disturbing, and my heart breaks for those who trusted him to care for their deceased loved ones," Nessel said. "We are committed to ensuring there is criminal accountability in this case."

Swanson was given a $5,000 personal recognizance bond. A probable cause conference is scheduled for Oct. 14.

The Department of Attorney General became involved in investigating Swanson over the summer following action from the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA).

LARA initiated its administrative action against Tri-County Cremation Services, L.L.C. under the Cemetery Regulation Act on June 4. The agency confirmed that all of the bodies were either cremated or removed on June 24.

The Department of Attorney General continues to investigate Swanson and his associates who were previously accused of violating administrative laws that LARA is responsible for administering.