A Delaware County Common Pleas Judge issued a judgment Friday ordering that Fairview Memorial Park be dissolved.
The owners of Fairview, Theodore and Arminda Martin, are currently facing charges for engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity as well as dozens of theft charges in Delaware County Common Pleas Court for allegedly selling cemetery plots and other items to Delaware County individuals, but never following through with delivery, and instead spending the money at a casino in Pennsylvania.
After the Martins were indicted, the cemetery fell into disrepair and Christopher Betts, a civil division county prosecutor, filed a lawsuit against the Martins, asking that the court appoint a receiver to care for the cemetery and asking that Fairview Memorial Park Incorporated be dissolved.
Court records indicate that the Martins were served copies of the lawsuit in May, but never responded to the lawsuit. The Martins are currently incarcerated after being convicted of a federal tax evasion charge.
Since the Martins never replied to the lawsuit, Betts asked Delaware County Common Pleas Judge David Gormley to render a default judgment. On Aug. 22, Gormley filed an entry for a default judgment and scheduled a hearing to discuss the matter.
The hearing was held Friday afternoon and at the hearing Gormley signed an order dissolving Fairview Memorial Park Inc.
Ken Goldberg, a Columbus attorney representing A.C. Strip, the court-appointed receiver for Fairview Memorial Park, told Gormley at the hearing that Strip is still pursuing a buyer for the cemetery. Goldberg added that the cemetery will soon be listed as “for sale” in the Ohio Cemetery Association newsletter.
Gormley also discussed Strip’s payment for the receivership during the hearing and said there clearly isn’t enough money in the cemetery’s account to pay Strip since the accounts only have a balance of around $3,000.
Goldberg told Gormley that Strip is not expecting to be paid from the operating costs of Fairview.
Betts and Gormley both said they appreciated the work Strip has done in turning the cemetery’s finances around.
The Martins remained in prison for a separate federal tax evasion charge as of Friday. They are scheduled to stand trial in Delaware County Common Pleas Court on Oct. 10.