A Connecticut man was arrested after police found the stolen skeletal remains of five bodies missing from a Worcester, Massachusetts, cemetery in his apartment.
Amador Medina, 32, told investigators he had used the stolen bones in religious ceremonies, The Courant reported, adding that the remains, taken from Hope Cemetery in Worcester, were recovered inside Medina's Hartford, Connecticut, apartment.
Police said the recovered remains of three adults and two young children were taken from caskets in a mausoleum at Hope Cemetery more than two months ago, and the last time a person was interred in that mausoleum was about 70 years ago, the Courant stated.
Medina was charged with being a fugitive of justice in Massachusetts, Fox reported, also saying that Worcester police have charged Medina with five counts of disinterment of bodies, conspiracy to commit a crime and accessory before the fact.
Medina told investigators that he practices Santeria, an Afro-Cuban religion, according to the Courant, which also stated that Medina allegedly said he needed the bones "for healing."
"The bones, I believe in this instance, according to our interview with the accused, would be used for medicinal purposes and medicinal practices in the Santeria faith," said Worcester Police Sgt. Brian Foley in a related CBS report. "We see it quite often with animals, be it chickens or pigs."