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Pittsburgh Criminal Lawyer > > College Students > Two University Of Pittsburgh Students Face Criminal Charges For Abusing A Corpse

Two University Of Pittsburgh Students Face Criminal Charges For Abusing A Corpse


When most people write their wills, they indicate their wishes about the final disposition of their remains.  For example, they might wish to be buried next to their parents in a certain cemetery, or they might wish to have their remains cremated and then scattered over Lake Erie.  Some choose alkaline hydrolysis, in which the body is liquefied in chemicals until only the bones remain, and in six states, you can even choose to have your remains turned into compost.  If, even in death, you want to bring health to others, you can volunteer as an organ donor, to give your usable organs to people who need them.  Another way to donate your body to science is to give consent to medical schools or pre-med programs to dissect your remains.  The dissection of human corpses has been part of medical education for centuries, and it enables students to learn about human anatomy.  Meanwhile, behaving toward a human corpse in a way that shows disrespect for the decedent and his or her surviving relatives is against the law, as students in an anatomy class in Pennsylvania have learned the hard way.  If you are facing criminal charges because of an incident that took place on your university campus or in your classes, contact a Pittsburgh college student defense lawyer.

Pennsylvania Abuse of a Corpse Laws

Pennsylvania law defines abuse of a corpse as knowingly treating a human corpse in a way that would “outrage ordinary family sensibilities.”  Abusing a corpse is a second degree misdemeanor, which means that the maximum penalty is a fine of $5,000 and two years imprisonment.  Most people convicted of second-degree misdemeanors receive fines of $500 to $5,000, and they may or may not get jail time.

In the News

Sonel Jimenez and Amay Gupta are both sophomores at the University of Pittsburgh.  In the fall of 2022, they took an anatomy class where they examined and dissected human cadavers.  Before the students received the cadavers, the professor instructed them on proper behavior toward cadavers in an educational setting.  Classmates told police that, on November 4, Jimenez groped a female cadaver while making lewd comments.  Other classmates said that Gupta made sexual comments about a male cadaver while dissecting it.  Jimenez and Gupta are scheduled for separate court appearances in January and have hired criminal defense lawyers.  Like all defendants in criminal cases, they are presumed innocent until proven guilty.  The WTAE news website did not indicate whether they have continued to attend the University of Pittsburgh while their cases are pending.

Contact Gary E. Gerson About College Student Defense Cases

Do not let accusations of a crime derail your educational plans.  Remember that even if your university takes disciplinary action against you for misconduct, it does not always mean that you are guilty of a crime.  A criminal defense lawyer can help you if you are facing criminal charges while attending university.  Contact the law offices of Gary E. Gerson in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania about your case.




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