A former Colorado funeral home owner who sold body parts was given a 20-year sentence. Let’s see Who is Megan Hess and why the Colorado woman was sentenced to 20 years in detail.
Who is Megan Hess?
|The Business of Body Brokers of Sunset Mesa- The Sentencing Hearing is scheduled for January 03, 2023, This has been a long time coming, for some longer than others, but hopefully the next step.
Tomorrow is the day that Megan Hess and Shirley Koch are sentenced for the dastardly deeds they committed against so many people and their families by selling body parts (either in whole or parts) without family consent for-profit and lying about it. This has been going on for about five years from when we first heard about it, but so much longer for what they did to the people we love.
Megan Hess lies about so many things including receiving a doctorate in mortuary services. She completed 1 year of junior college and enjoyed vet medicine.
Only place in the US that operates a funeral home, crematorium, and body broker business. But no federal law governs the sale of cadavers or body parts for use in research or education. Few state laws provide any oversight. That means almost anyone, regardless of expertise, can dissect and sell human remains. Colorado does not regulate body brokers. It is also the only state that doesn’t license funeral directors. The abuse of a corpse is a misdemeanor with minimal penalty.
February 06, 2018 – Sunset Mesa was raided by the FB. On March 19, 2020, Megan Hess and Shirley Koch were arrested and charged with six counts each of mail fraud and three counts each of illegal transportation of hazardous materials. If convicted, Hess and Koch could face up to 135 years in prison.
Matt Soper, Colorado Representatives initiate legislation regarding funeral homes, body broker business, and records. Soper said he and Roberts are thinking of making the bill a tribute to Rick Neuendorf, who with Judy Cressler and others was a vocal advocate for reform.
“He was one of the shining stars of our ‘family’ that we formed. I knew there were going to be people who didn’t get to see (the outcome of the case), but I just didn’t think that Rick wouldn’t be one of them,” Cressler said. “I’m pleased that Rep. Soper is going to do that in honor of Rick. That is so fitting.”
On July 5, 2022, Megan Hess pleads to one count of mail fraud with a max penalty of 20 years – but she feels she should receive none or 2 years. No true admission of guilt in a plea deal.
On July 12, 2022, Koch pleads guilty to one count of mail fraud and agrees to possibly 7 years. A number of victims Hess and Koch think there are– ZERO. The number of victims in reality – over 500 or more, but we will never know since the records were missing or destroyed.
Amount Koch feels should be reimbursed to families – ZERO, but will settle for $13,000. The amount the judicial system thinks they should pay – $1.25 million – but does the monetary value matter? Number of people affected – Immeasurable The number of lives changed – Immeasurable Number of times we received information from news sources instead of who we should have received from the FBI/Judicial system – too many to count Number of tears shed – Infinite Number of people who will never know where their loved ones are – unknown
There have been so many individuals putting their lives on hold, being the individuals stepping up to the plate to make sure the world, and our loved ones, know what happened.
They told their stories, continued to be the conduit with the FBI and justice system, listening to people lie to us about what is going on and supporting us, and always supplying the information that was refused to us – the families affected by this. To you our incredible advocates – (Debra, Danielle, Judie, Rick (my stepfather) and so many others (I am sorry I do not know everyone’s names), I am eternally grateful for what you did for each of us. I can never repay you but to say thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Tomorrow is hopefully the day many of us have been anticipating – with anger, despair, and fear. I know this has been a challenge, a nightmare, a loss of life for so many – but we each must hope that something came out of this tragedy. Our losses have become someone else’s gain for those in the future so that it does not happen to them.
Laws have changed, penalties increased, restrictions and guidelines updated…and the story of our loved ones is now what others can learn from and pray that it does not happen to others. Yes, it is a hard and sometimes unimaginable fact of life, but our family members will not want us to live a life of loss…but love life as much as they loved us. We will never forget…
Why the Colorado woman was sentenced to 20 years?
A lady who ran a funeral home in Montrose was given a 20-year prison term on Tuesday for selling the body parts of numerous individuals whose families had requested cremation.
In July, Megan Hess, 46, admitted guilty to mail fraud. Shirly Koch, her mother, who is 69 years old, received a 15-year prison term on Tuesday for mail fraud and aiding and abetting.
In Montrose, the Sunset Mesa Funeral Home was run by Hess and Koch. Hess and others “stole the bodies or body parts of hundreds of victims,” according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Colorado, which announced their indictment in March 2020.
Hess and Koch, according to the prosecution, would allegedly give families the cremains of another person—or occasionally numerous people—while pretending to be returning their loved ones’ ashes.
According to the authorities, Hess and Koch made hundreds of thousands of dollars as a result of the operation, which ran from roughly February 2010 till that time.
In addition, Hess and Koch, according to federal authorities, “sent bodies and body parts that tested positive for, or belonged to people who had died from, infectious diseases, including Hepatitis B and C, and HIV, after certifying to buyers that the remains were disease free.”
Authorities said that the shipments would violate Department of Transportation standards on the transportation of hazardous materials because they would be sent by mail or commercial flights.
According to a published statement from U.S. Attorney Cole Finegan, “the defendants’ conduct was terrible and morbid and driven by greed. They took advantage of multiple victims who were at their lowest points due to the recent loss of a loved one.”
As the victims’ families continue their grieving process, we hope that some measure of peace will be provided by these prison terms.
We hope that this punishment deters future scammers of a similar mindset.
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