STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — A man has been charged with abusing the corpse of a Philadelphia woman found dead on the side of a central Pennsylvania road on Valentine’s Day.
Robert Moir told police that 35-year-old Corinne Pena died on his bathroom floor, and he left her body along a road, figuring it would be quickly found and wouldn’t decompose because of the low temperatures.
Moir’s attorney, James Bryant, described Pena as a houseguest who “died on him.”
“He probably should have called 911,” but he didn’t,” Bryant told The Associated Press on Wednesday. “In ‘National Lampoon’s Vacation,’ it was sort of funny, but this isn’t ‘National Lampoon’s Vacation’ or ‘Weekend at Bernie’s.”
Ferguson Township police said Moir, 59, acknowledged meeting Pena in the Philadelphia area several days before she was found dead. Moir told police he and Pena spent several nights in a hotel before he brought her back to Patton Township in central Pennsylvania.
Moir found Pena dead Feb. 13 on his bathroom floor. Police believe she overdosed, but toxicology tests are pending. He dumped her body in Ferguson Township, police said.
A passer-by found Pena’s body, and authorities could not immediately identify her. After they released images of Pena’s tattoos and a wedding band, relatives confirmed her identity.
“It is simply heart-wrenching, and we hope this arrest brings some peace to her family and friends,” Centre County District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller said after Tuesday’s charges. “We remind the public that this kind of callous behavior is totally unnecessary in light of the overdose immunity law.”
Moir faces a preliminary hearing March 23. Abuse of a corpse is a second-degree misdemeanor, carrying up to two years in prison upon conviction.
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