The family of a deceased San Antonio woman whose body went missing from her casket has sued the funeral parlor for negligence, with their attorneys alleging they allowed an embalming company with an employee who was “into Satan” access to the body, according to court records and published reports.
On August 15, 2015, a memorial service was held at Mission Cherry Park for Julie Mott, a 25-year-old woman who died from natural causes.
“Sometime later that day, after the memorial service but before the body was transferred to a crematorium, Mission lost possession of Julie Mott’s body and to this day has been unable to explain how they lost the body,” according to the $2.5 million lawsuit, which was obtained by PEOPLE.
The pending lawsuit went to trial three weeks ago and a jury was expected to begin deliberations Tuesday.
In an unexpected twist last week, the family’s attorney questioned a third party embalming contractor about one of his employees’ social media posts, according to reports in the San Antonio Express-News.
“He’s testified he’s into Satan,” Alex Katzman, an attorney representing the Mott family, said in court. “Did you know that?”
“No,” said Frederick Beyer, an owner of Beyer & Beitel Mortuary Services, which embalmed Julie Mott. “I didn’t know anything about Satan.”
“Is there any concern in regard with him having access to departed loved ones,” Katzman asked.
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“No,” Beyer responded, according to an article in the Express-News.
Mott’s family has accused the funeral home owners of using third-party contractors to transport bodies to be prepared for burial or cremation, and allege the company provides numerous people with the access to the facilities with security codes that haven’t been changed in decades, the newspaper reported.
In closing arguments Tuesday, attorneys for the Mott family accused someone associated with the third-party contractor of taking the young woman’s body, according to local TV station KSAT12.
Mott’s mother Sharlotte told jurors last week that she is heartbroken because she has been unable to bury her daughter, according to the Express-News.
“Her urn sits empty,” Sharlotte cried. ‘We can’t even put a picture [on it]. She’s not there.”
Allegedly ‘Obsessed’ Ex-Boyfriend to Stand Trial
Meanwhile, a criminal trial associated with the case is expected to begin in April.
Mott’s ex-boyfriend Bill Willburn was arrested last year. He was charged with two counts of criminal trespassing.
“The [suspect] had been invited to the service the day before and had been the last to leave,” a police report obtained by PEOPLE states. “[The suspect] had been obsessed with [Julie Mott] calling and texting.”
In two separate incidents, Wilburn was spotted trying to gain entry into the funeral home after a criminal trespass notice was filed against him, according to police reports.
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San Antonio police obtained a warrant to collect a DNA sample from Wilburn, according to local TV station KSAT12.
“I think he’s being a little disingenuous and I don’t think that he’s giving us all the information that we need,” SAPD spokesman Sgt. Jesse Salame told KSAT12. “And he certainly hasn’t been what I would call overly cooperative.”
Police officials have not called Wilburn a suspect in the disappearance of Mott, according to KSAT12.
PEOPLE’s attempts to reach the attorneys litigating the lawsuit, as well as the attorney for Wilburn, were unsuccessful.