Man facing charge of abusing a corpse

Police allege that he fondled body

3/9/2012
BLADE STAFF
Lawrence J. Clement
Lawrence J. Clement

A 57-year-old Michigan man was arraigned Friday in Toledo Municipal Court on a charge of abuse of a corpse, alleging that he fondled a woman's body at an area funeral home.

Bond was set at $50,000.

The charge against Lawrence J. Clement of 2411 Sunnydale Dr., Temperance, was filed Thursday.

Toledo police Sgt. Joe Heffernan said investigators contacted Mr. Clement and told him a warrant was out for his arrest. About 1 p.m. Thursday, he turned himself in at the Northwest District Station, 2330 W. Sylvania Ave.

Police say he had "sexual contact by means of touching the erogenous zone" of Brenda Shular-Cameron, 51, who died Sunday of multiple organ failure. According to documents filed in Toledo Municipal Court, the alleged abuse occurred Sunday at the H.H. Birkenkamp Funeral Home, 3219 Tremainsville Rd.

Mr. Clement, who worked part time at H.H. Birkenkamp, has since been fired by the company, a spokesman said Wednesday.

It's unclear what Mr. Clement's duties were at the funeral home, but the family of the victim said they were told he worked there for seven years and was a greeter.

One of the oldest businesses in Toledo, H.H. Birkenkamp was founded in 1858 by Herman Henry Birkenkamp, and operated by four generations of the Birkenkamp family in Toledo before it was sold in 1989 to The Loewin Group Inc., Vancouver. Service Corp. International of Houston bought the company in 2006.