|James Howard Patton|
James Howard Patton, 39, may need another lesson about the birds and the bees. Obviously afflicted with serious sexual issues, the former employee of Earthman Funeral Home in Houston was arrested this past weekend after some very weird photos surfaced while Patton was being investigated for allegedly harassing an ex-girlfriend over the Internet.
The police obtained a search warrant for his computers earlier this year, and purportedly found a little more than they were looking for, particularly with regard to his photos.
One of the sick images on Patton’s computer depicted a man’s penis touching the foot of a naked female corpse. Another showed a dead female lying spread-eagle. Based on the information that was released by the Houston Police Department, it was not clear whether the photos involved more than one incident or more than one corpse…
The digital photos, according to Lisa Marshall, spokesperson for
Earthman’s parent company, Service Corporation International, were taken in 2004, prior to Patton’s employment at
“These are very disturbing allegations,” Marshall said. “I hope
people understand that this incident is unusual and is not indicative
of what we’re like as an industry.”
An expert who examined the photos, 27 in all, concurred that they were taken in 2004.
“I can tell you that the defendant’s male sexual organ was seen in
various poses with those of dead bodies,” said Donna Hawkins, a
representative of the Harris County District Attorney’s Office.
Patton’s ex-girlfriend fingered Patton as the man seen in at least
one of the photos, and investigators said they had found other photos
of Patton wearing a suit similar to that seen in the photos.
According to court documents, Patton purportedly told police that he
had also taken photos of himself and corpses in September 2008, while
he was still employed at Earthman’s, and admitted that he last abused a
corpse “a year ago.”
Patton has been charged with abuse of a corpse, a class A
misdemeanor, and was released from jail after posting $1,500 bond. If
convicted, he faces up to a year in jail and a $4,000 fine.
See the original story from our sister site, Houston Press.