Kansas man sentenced to over 5 years in prison for performing illegal autopsies
In the case he pleaded guilty to in May, Parcells used false credentials to convince a client he was qualified to perform an autopsy, the DOJ said in a statement. Parcells received $5,000 and provided the client with an emailed copy of a final report that appeared to be written by Parcells, but no pathologists were involved in the review or report, according to the release.
“It is troubling that criminals misrepresent themselves as professionals to defraud unwitting victims, but the fact that Parcells’ schemes were based on exploiting the grief and bereavement of others makes his act a particularly predatory crime,” U.S. Attorney Duston Slinkard said in this week’s release.
In 2014, Parcells told CNN he sometimes performs autopsy procedures without a doctor present, and said it was legal as long as he was under the supervision of a doctor and the doctor signed the report.
At the time, Parcells did not claim to have a specific license or certification to do the work he did and said he knew how to do autopsies through “on-the-job training”, observing pathologists and helping them in various mortuaries. Parcells told CNN he sometimes got paid for this work and sometimes not.
In August, a Kansas County district judge permanently barred Parcells from doing business and ordered him to pay more than $250,000 in restitution “related to the provision of unlawful autopsy services,” according to a statement from the Kansas Attorney General’s Office.
“He is required to comply with all Kansas laws that regulate any profession, and he is prohibited from using titles or initials that include professions in the healing arts or any other profession for which he does not is not educated, certified or qualified,” the statement read. .
In response to a CNN request for comment, Parcells attorney David Magariel referenced the sentencing notice filed earlier this month. In the memo, the defense said most people convicted with similar criminal histories to Parcells in the District of Kansas were given less than 24 months.
CNN’s Andy Rose, Rebekah Riess, Elizabeth Cohen and Matthew Stucker contributed to this report.