The remains of a young boy and a 72-year-old man were stolen from two New Jersey cemeteries in recent months, authorities said Wednesday.
Police are looking into the thefts, which “may be the work of individuals involved in a non-traditional religious practice,” the Middlesex County prosecutor’s office said in a release.
Officials said the investigation began in November when a visitor at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Perth Amboy discovered an open grave. Authorities discovered that the body of a two-year-old boy had been removed.
Last week, a person passing Most Holy Rosary Cemetery in Woodbridge noticed that a granite mausoleum “had been disturbed,” according to the Middlesex prosecutor. Employees discovered that the body of a 72-year-old male was missing.
It is unclear whether there was any link between the two taken bodies of why those graves would have been targeted.
Grave robberies are rare, but recent cases in the region have also been recorded, including last August on Long Island, when thieves stole the body of a woman from a crypt in East Farmingdale. And in Connecticut in 2009, a young girl's body was stolen from a Stamford graveyard.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Woodbridge Police Department at (732) 634-7700 or the Perth Amboy Police Department at (732) 442-4400.