Attorney General Rokita’s staff initiated an investigation into the funeral home in July 2022 after Jeffersonville police discovered horrifying conditions within the building. Police found the bodies of 31 individuals being stored at the facility, some of which had been left awaiting cremation for months after death. The cremains of 17 individuals were also recovered.
“It’s hard to believe the appalling conditions at this funeral home,” Attorney General Rokita said. “Hoosier families deserve to have their loved ones treated with dignity and respect by funeral homes and their employees.”
An administrative complaint was filed with the State Board of Funeral and Cemetery Service on March 31, 2023. Lankford and his funeral home were charged with professional incompetence, failure to dispose of the 31 bodies in a timely manner, storing cremains at the facility beyond the legally permitted period and other related charges.
Upon hearing evidence on August 3, 2023, the State Board unanimously voted to permanently revoke the funeral home’s license and Lankford’s funeral director license.
“This is one of the most egregious cases our office has seen in recent times,” Attorney General Rokita said. “I’m proud that we were able to work together with local law enforcement to hold Mr. Lankford accountable and make sure he can never practice another funeral service in Indiana ever again.”
Attorney General Rokita’s office investigates cases against various licensed professionals and entities across the state. While most professions only issue licenses to individual practitioners, such as physicians and nurses, some also issue licenses to facilities, such as funeral homes, or to firms, such as real estate broker companies and accountancy firms.
Attorney General Rokita expressed his gratitude to the Jeffersonville Police Department and the Clark County Coroner’s Office for their willingness to work together with his office on this matter. He also wishes to recognize Deputy Attorney General Ian Mathew and Investigators Denise Singleton and Lindsey Bruce for their diligent work.
Hoosiers can file a consumer complaint with the Attorney General’s office here.