Fort Worth Funeral Home Was Operating Without License

Records from state regulators reveal troubled history

The Johnson Family Mortuary in Fort Worth, which is under police investigation after eight decaying bodies were found there on Tuesday, had no funeral director and should not have been operating, according to state records obtained by NBC 5.

The mortuary also had seven complaints. All but two of them were open and unresolved.

NBC 5 obtained hundreds of pages of records on the mortuary from the Texas Funeral Service Commission, the state agency that regulates the funeral business.

In one of the complaints, a woman whose husband died in January reported the Johnson Family Mortuary kept $4,725 in insurance money but never performed the funeral. She had to find a second funeral home to bury her husband.

The funeral home is run by twin brothers Dondre and Derrick Johnson, according to its website. State records show Dondre Johnson’s wife, Rachel, also was a manager.

The three have denied doing anything wrong.

But the commission records obtained by NBC 5 under the Texas open records law revealed a long paper trail of troubles.

Just last month, regulators sent a letter to Rachel Johnson, who also used the last name Hardy, declaring her provisional license had expired, and informing her that she "must cease and desist any and all acts of funeral directing and/or embalming immediately.”

Records show another funeral director was hired for a short time, but he left July 1, meaning the funeral home had nobody licensed to run the facility, and should not have been conducting business at all.

Fort Worth police said its criminal investigation continues. No charges have been filed.

Dondre Johnson remained in the Tarrant County Jail Thursday night on an unrelated charge of failure to pay child support

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