WAYNE COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - Kentucky State Police have released the identity of a body found last week in Wayne County.
The body was found on the afternoon of April 22 at a home on Brammer Hill Road. A Pulaski County deputy found the body when he was following up on a missing person's investigation.
The body was taken to Frankfort for an autopsy, and has since been identified as Faye B. Whiteford, 96, of Science Hill.
The Pulaski County Sheriff's Office issued a press release Tuesday, saying they were contacted in February by the Office of the Inspector General (OIG), asking for help in finding Whiteford and her son. Agents were investigating a referral from the Social Security Administration, concerning social security benefits being paid to Whiteford.
The Social Security Administration noted that Whiteford had not made a medical claim in about three years. This threw up red flags that a welfare check on her be made, because they thought she may be dead, but agents found no record of Whiteford dying.
Pulaski deputies say agents told detectives that Whiteford's son, Jon Whiteford, had access to her finances and would need to be contacted.
During their investigation, detectives say Jon Whiteford went to the local social security office in March 2014 to apply for his own benefits. They say he was interviewed, then again later in the month by agents and also detectives with Somerset Police. In those interviews, they say Jon Whiteford said he had no home, and had been living out of his car after having his home repossessed. They say he also confirmed his mother was dead, but refused to say how she died, as well as the location of her body.
During the interview with OIG agents, Pulaski detectives continued their search for answers as to what happened to Faye Whiteford. They learned she'd been bedfast for several years, and her son, Jon Whiteford, was her caretaker.
They say on March 29, 2014, Jon Whiteford was staying at a friend's home in Science Hill, next door to his own home. The owners of the home live in Lexington, and had given him a key to watch over the home in Science Hill. When a Pulaski Sheriff's deputy arrived at the home to speak with Jon Whiteford, they say he committed suicide, leaving many unanswered questions on the whereabouts of Faye Whiteford. Upon searching both homes on Maggie Lane, Faye Whiteford's body was not found.
On April 22, Pulaski County detectives, along with the county coroner, and special agents with the OIG's office met with specially-trained K-9 units from the Kenton County Sheriff's Office and also Grant County Sheriff's Office to search the area around the homes on Maggie Lane for any sign of Faye Whiteford's body.
Detectives found out Jon Whiteford had been trying to rent some property on Brammer Hill Ridge Road in Wayne County.
On April 23, a Pulaski County detective searched that address. While looking around the property, the detective found a tied-up tarp, partially-covered with a wooden box in the front yard. The body was found inside.
They found out Whiteford died of natural causes in 2011. They say after her passing, Jon Whiteford continued drawing his mother's social security and retirement benefits.
They say he bought a freezer and kept his mother's remains inside it since her death in 2011, until he was forced to move from his home around Christmas 2013. Investigators think he was forced to clean the home and took his mother's remains to the Wayne County home he was trying to rent. They say, due to the cold winter, the remains likely remained frozen until recently.
Detectives say they would like to speak with anyone who has had contact with Jon Whiteford over the last several months. They are urged to call the Pulaski Coutny Sheriff's Office at 606-678-5145.
The press released issued to media goes on to say "The Pulaski County Sheriff's Office would like to express our sympathy to friends and family of Ms. Faye Whiteford," says Sheriff Todd Wood. "Our thoughts and prayers are extended to them as they deal with the death of the loved one and the horrendous manner in which she was treated."