More than a week after a 22-year-old son and his ex-girlfriend were arrested for allegedly hiding the body of the son's dead father to receive his pension benefits, Solano County detectives are still digging through documents before recommending whether to charge the pair.
Joseph Romer and his 19-year-old ex-girlfriend, Sandeep Waloo, were both arrested on Dec. 17 and 19, respectively, and were booked into jail on charges of improperly moving a dead person, grand theft and elder abuse, but both were released from custody.
The body of Romer's father, Richard Romer, 56, of Alameda, was discovered on Dec. 2 in a wooden box on the side of the yard in the 1200 block of Warren Avenue. Detectives said the yard belonged to Joseph Romer's aunt, and this is at least the third location where the body - tucked away in the box - had been taken, according to the sheriff's office.
In an interview Thursday with NBC Bay Area, Solano County Sheriff's Det. Carrie Berg said that Joseph Romer had allegedly carted his father's dead body around from location to location over the last two years.
The reason, she said, was so that Joseph Romer and his ex-girlfriend could allegedly collect thousands of dollars of his pension money. Berg showed NBC Bay Area a check where Joseph Romer had allegedly forged his father's signature.
"I'm still in the process of like, taking in the fact that there was a dead guy next to our house," said neighbor Nathan Kernan.
Berg said that the case is very complex and investigators are digging deep into proving what happened, and determining just how much was taken.