Hearing set to determine cemetery’s future


By Glenn Battishill - gbattishill@aimmedianetwork.com



A hearing has been set in Delaware County Common Pleas Court to determine the future of Fairview Memorial Park.

On May 9, Assistant County Prosecutor Kyle Rohrer and Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, Civil Division, Christopher Betts, filed a complaint against Theodore and Arminda Martin, the owners of Fairview Memorial Park Inc.

The complaint alleges that the Martins have used the cemetery to further criminal purposes by taking money for goods and services. But the couple never delivered the items and are charged with engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and theft.

The complaint also states that the Martins are currently in out-of-state prisons for a federal tax evasion case related to the cemetery and prosecutors argue that Fairview Memorial Cemetery Incorporated should be dissolved because the Martins are not able to care for it.

In the suit, Betts asks Delaware County Common Pleas Judge David Gormley to appoint someone to care for the cemetery and asks that Gormley order the cemetery to be sold.

On May 11, Gormley set a hearing for May 19 at 2 p.m. to discuss the case.

Betts said in an email Thursday that if Gormley appoints a receiver to care for the cemetery they would likely arrange for mowing and maintenance.

Theodore and Arminda were convicted of the tax evasion charges and each ordered to serve one year in prison last year. However, the sentencing judge delayed Theodore’s sentence so he could run Fairview and two other cemeteries.

However, two weeks ago federal agents learned that Theodore Martin had twice used cemetery funds to post bond in Delaware County Common Pleas Court and took him into custody and ordered that he immediately begin serving his one-year prison sentence. Arminda is scheduled to be released from prison in January 2018.

Theodore Martin is charged with one count of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and 52 counts of theft in Delaware County Common Pleas Court. He was scheduled to stand trial on May 30 but on Monday, his attorney, William Leber, filed a motion for a continuance because Martin is currently in prison for the tax evasion case.

A new trial has not yet been scheduled.

Arminda Martin is charged with one count of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and 37 counts of theft in Delaware County Common Pleas Court. An arraignment has not yet been set for Arminda.

Court records indicate that Theodore is currently serving his prison sentence at Dauphin County Prison in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and Arminda is serving her sentence at Alderson Federal Prison Camp in Alderson, West Virginia.

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By Glenn Battishill

gbattishill@aimmedianetwork.com

Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.

Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.