Lawyer: Security guard may not serve time after admitting to having sex with corpse

Lawyer: Security guard may not serve time after admitting to having sex with corpse
April Parham (Source: family)
April Parham (Source: family)

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - The hospital security guard caught having sex with a corpse is out of jail on bond.

Cameron Wright posted his $3,000 bond following a court appearance Friday.

According to a police report, two people walked into a "body storage room" and saw Wright violating a woman's body.

Police said Wright admitted to the crime while he was in custody.

The victim, 37-year-old kindergarten teacher April Parham, died of a heart attack Wednesday morning.

Her family said her body was being held in order that her organs could be harvested.

"After you pass, we think, 'Finally, she's not suffering; she's not hurting no more,'" Parham's father, James, said.

One Memphis attorney says despite the universal revulsion of such an act, abuse of a corpse is a low-level felony in Tennessee.

Tennessee does not have a law against necrophilia, according to attorney Claiborne Ferguson, but does cover it under abuse of a corpse, which is a more comprehensive law. It is classified as a felony.

"It's a real low felony," Ferguson said. "It's presumptive diversion eligible probation, probably not do any jail time on it."

Wright made his first court appearance on Friday. Ferguson says that low bond is an indication of the low-level offense Wright is accused of.

Wright was a security guard working at St. Francis Hospital.

A hospital spokesperson declined to answer nearly a dozen questions Friday about the incident.

A few of the questions WMC Action News 5 asked the hospital included questions about security protocols, how the security guard got access to the victim's body, and if the hospital was investigating Wright's access to other corpses in the past.

The hospital released the following statement:

"The individual was not an employee of Saint Francis Hospital; therefore, any questions related to his employment should be directed to U.S. Security Associates. Due to privacy laws, we are unable to comment on a particular patient's case.

Wright worked for U.S. Security Associates. The company would not say how long he has worked for them, but records show he became a licensed security guard in 2015.

The security company said nothing in Wright's background check raised red flags.

Methodist said it had been more than a year since Wright was employed at the hospital. They declined to comment further about his employment.

Meanwhile, Parham's family has hired Memphis attorney Murray Wells.

WMC5 knocked at Wright's apartment on Friday, but no one answered the door.

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