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 November 9, 2023

Colorado funeral home owners arrested after police find 190 bodies

Police arrested Jon and Carie Hallford, the owners of the Return to Nature Funeral Home, on Wednesday after discovering 190 bodies in the facility.

The pair has been formally charged with abuse of a corpse, theft, money laundering and forgery by Colorado District Attorney Michael Allan.

The investigation into the Return to Nature funeral home began in October 2023 after foul odors were reported emanating from the building.

Police searched the promises following those odor complaints and "discovered improperly stored bodies” which were the source of the “abhorrent smell.”

Return to Nature advertises itself as green funeral home that does not use embalming fluids on its corpses. Apparently, they also don't use good faith either in handling those given into their care.

Horrific discovery

Police originally estimated the number of improperly stored bodies at 115, a number that would climb to 190 as authorities continued to make increasingly horrible discoveries.

Soon after police moved in and searched the facility, costumers began to speak up about the lack of communication and transparency that the funeral home showed.

One individual, who's mother was discovered at the facility, said that "I don’t think any amount of jail/prison time will justify my brother having to clean my mother’s rotting flesh off her bracelet that they gave back to us. Nothing. It’s [the arrest] just one step in a long process. I don’t feel any satisfaction from this."

Some of the bodies that were discovered were dated back to 2019, nearly five years ago.

Furthermore, the discovery of these bodies meant that Jon and Carie Hallford had sent fake ashes to many costumers.

Another costumer of Return to Nature, Crystina Page, detailed the horror of her situation following the discovery that the ashes she had been given weren't her deceased son's.

Page said, "For four years, I’ve marched all over this country with this urn believing it to be my son. My son has been laying there rotting for four years. ... It’s the most horrendous feeling I’ve ever had in my life."

Closure for families

While this discovery has been traumatic for countless families, at least they can take some solace in knowing that Jon and Carie Hallford will be held accountable for their horrific actions.

The Hallfords have been jailed on a $2 million bond, which is especially high because the couple attempted to flee prosecution by leaving the state. Americans will have to wait for the rest of the details of the case as authorities have been tight lipped about this shockingly awful case.

Written By:
Robert Hoel

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