Robert Kennedy Jr failed to file the necessary paperwork to have the coffin containing the remains of his ex-wife Mary Richardson Kennedy exhumed and moved, it has been revealed.
The Daily Mail reports that although Richardson Kennedy's remains were only moved about 700 feet from the graves of Kennedy relatives to a new plot on the other side of Saint Francis Xavier Cemetery in Hyannis, Kennedy Jr did not have the permit required for the exhumation local officials have claimed.
Richardson Kennedy, who hanged herself in May, was originally interred near Eunice and Sargent Shriver, Kennedy Jr's aunt and uncle, but now she has been moved 700 feet to a new part of the cemetery.
Linda Hutchenrider, the town clerk of Barnstable, Massachusetts, told the New York Daily News this week that the family had broken the rule by failing to complete paperwork for the exhumation last week.
'When you deposit a body in Massachusetts, you need a permit. And if the body is moved, you need another permit - even if it’s in the same cemetery,' Hutchenrider said.
A gravedigger reportedly told the Daily News that Kennedy Jr moved the remains to a spot with more space. Kennedy Jr is now reportedly negotiating to buy a further 50 plots.
Apart from John F Kennedy and his wife Jacqueline and brothers Robert and Edward, who are all buried in Arlington National Cemetery, most of the Kennedy family are buried in Brookline, Massachusetts.
It has been confirmed this week that Richardson Kennedy's siblings didn't want Mary Richardson Kennedy to be buried in Hyannis Port at all. Richardson Kennedy's brothers and sisters took Kennedy Jr to court over his decision to have his estranged wife buried in Hyannis.
Instead they wanted their beloved sister to be buried in Westchester, New York, claiming that it would be easier for her four children to visit the grave. However Kennedy Jr won the right to have her buried in Hyannis.
Meanwhile an autopsy report suggested that Richardson Kennedy's might have changed her mind about hanging herself at the last minute.
Westchester County Medical Examiner Doctor Kunjlata Ashar reportedly noted ithat Richardson Kennedy had her fingers between her neck and the noose when she was found dead at her family's estate in Bedford, New York.
The position could suggest that she was trying to loosen the rope, but the doctor also said her trapped fingers could simply show that 'she was trying to place the rope around her neck.'
However Doctor Shiya Ribowsky, a former New York City Medical Examiner who was in charge of forensics for the victims of 9/11, told the Daily News: 'I have investigated many, many suicides by hanging and I've never seen that. She may have been trying to pull the rope off. Few people would be able to do it. If she had changed her mind but was already suspended, there would be more than enough pressure to kill her. And in a hanging, the person becomes unconscious within 15 seconds.'
Asked about Doctor Ashar’s hypothesis, Doctor Ribowsky said: 'If she had her fingers around the noose when she stepped off, her fingers could have gotten caught. But she could certainly have changed her mind and may have been trying to get the rope off. It’s impossible to tell.'
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