‘The coffin is gone’: 911 caller alerts deputies to grave robbery at Mount Dora Cemetery


MOUNT DORA, Florida. – An alert citizen walking past a cemetery in Mount Dora saw something and called 911 to notify the Lake County Sheriff’s Office of what they call suspected ritual activity.

Deputies said they were called to Edgewood Cemetery at 3333 Britt Road on Sunday afternoon about a complaint of vandalism to some of the graves.

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The 911 caller said she was walking past the cemetery and noticed a disturbed headstone. The woman, who was with her mother, entered the cemetery and saw at least four graves that had been vandalized and called authorities, according to the 911 call.

“There are graves where the vault has been removed and half the coffin has disappeared,” the caller said. “I know this is the (unintelligible) call you’ll be getting all day but…” she said, acknowledging the odd circumstances.

Deputies said the vandals disturbed four graves, which no longer contained human remains, and tried to gain access to a fifth.

“The coffins have been removed, you say? asked the dispatcher.

The top half of the coffins were missing, according to the caller.

Detectives said evidence suggests the incident is likely linked to some form of ritual activity.

“If it was my family, I wouldn’t want anyone to come and dig them up,” the 911 caller said.

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Deputies said the concrete lids of at least two of the graves had been smashed to pieces and the coffins had been forced open.

Deputies spoke to residents who live nearby and they said they had not heard any loud noises coming from the cemetery.

A funeral was held at the cemetery on Saturday, but a property representative said the equipment used for the burial was removed around 3 p.m.

A Mount Dora police officer said he saw a white pop-up tent at the cemetery around 8.20am on Saturday, but did not notice anything unusual.

Crews were working Monday to repair the damage.

Deputies are asking anyone who noticed any type of suspicious vehicles or activity at the cemetery Saturday night to call the sheriff’s office at 352-343-2101.

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