Invasion of the Body Snatchers at Long Island Cemetery

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Family of the departed leave Phillies gear at cemetaries as a way to celebrate with their lost loved ones.

    It's a truly ghoulish crime.

    Detectives on Long Island are investigating the theft of human remains from a mausoleum.

    Suffolk County police say the break-in at the St. Charles Cemetery on Conklin Avenue in East Farmingdale happened between 6:30 p.m. Monday and 7:30 a.m. Tuesday.

    Three mausoleums were entered and a casket was removed from one of the mausoleums.

    Investigators believe human remains were then taken from the casket. The woman, who died about 12 years ago, wasn't identified, but the family of the deceased has been notified of the theft, police said.

    Police used K-9 units to search the grounds of the cemetery for the body but no luck.

    "We believe there was more than one participant," said Deputy Inspector Robert Brown of the Suffolk County Police. "Because heavy items had to be moved in this process."

    Police believe the vandals parked their vehicle outside the cemetery and climbed a fence to get inside.

    There was also damage to other burial sites, officials said.

    "Vandalizing cemeteries isn't unusual," Brown added. "but stealing a body is not something you see very often."

    The cemetery is operated by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn. A spokesman did not immediately return a telephone call seeking comment.

    Detectives are asking anyone with information on this incident to contact the Suffolk County Police First Squad at 631-854-8152 or anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS. All calls will be kept confidential.