Homicide victim's grave partially unearthed in Ocala

In 2012, three men desecrated 54 graves, pled guilty, police said


OCALA, Fla. – The grave of a homicide victim was unearthed, the Ocala Police Department said.

Jaire Burgess, 19, was fatally shot at Spring Manor Apartments, in July 2014, police said.

A groundskeeper at Highlands Memorial Park called police on Wednesday after a grave was discovered to be disturbed.

Someone dug about 18 inches down into the ground and removed the dirt, exposing the top of the concrete vault, police said.

On one side of the vault lid, 6 inches of dirt was removed, leaving more than half of the vault lid exposed, according to police.

The casket was not accessed by whoever dug up the hole.

An employee of the Highlands Memorial Park told police he saw three people standing near the area of Burgess’ grave on Wednesday morning.

He noted that when he left at 3 p.m. on Tuesday afternoon, he did not notice anything amiss.

The three people spotted the employee and they walked away from the area, the groundskeeper told police.

Upon getting closer to the area, the employee found the disturbed grave site.

Several shoe prints were observed in the dirt, police said.

The grave was restored by cemetery workers.

Three men pleaded guilty and served one year in the Marion County Jail for desecrating 54 graves in 2012.

Two of the sites were found to be defecated upon, and the men claimed they were bored and drinking at the time.