Former Idaho coroner may have stored bodies in his truck, his successor says

Idaho

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The Valley County coroner’s truck, parked Tuesday behind the Heikkila-Carver Funeral Home in McCall. | Darin Oswald, Idaho Statesman

BOISE — The new owner of Valley County’s only funeral home immediately noticed something odd. No bodies were coming into the facility in McCall, the county’s designated morgue.

Then he started receiving some disconcerting phone calls.

“We were getting calls from families wanting to know where their loved ones were. I didn’t have any clue where the bodies were,” said Scott Carver, who took over as Heikkila Funeral Home director on Dec. 1 and with his wife, Nicole, became its new owner Jan. 2.

Then came calls from the county Sheriff’s Office, from county prosecutors. And finally, a call from Idaho State Police, who told Carver they had launched an investigation.

As that investigation progressed, Carver said, he finally learned what had happened.

Valley County Coroner Nathan Hess, Heikkila’s previous funeral director, had apparently stopped taking the bodies to the county morgue after he was fired from the funeral home on Nov. 11.

But there is no other morgue or funeral home in Valley County. So where was Hess taking the bodies?

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