Police Respond To Car Crash, Mistake Grandpa’s Ashes For Heroin

Photo: Getty Images

For once, a scene that wouldn’t even be believable in the most outrageous Hollywood script didn’t happen in Florida, it happened in Maine.

It all starts with a man named Kevin Raymond Curtis, 57, who was nice enough to loan his car to a friend, 31-year-old Jess Legendre. Legendre had to go to the grocery store after all. But the trip proved unsuccessful.

In short, Legendre crashed Curtis’ car into a pole. Legendre passed out. Police showed up, suspected impaired driving, gave Legendre Narcan to revive him, found a plastic baggy full of white stuff they assumed was heroin, and then took Legendre away in cuffs.

But it turns out Legendre wasn’t on drugs. And the ‘white stuff’ was the cremated remains of Curtis’ father.

Central Maine

In fact, it took about 48 hours to have the cremains returned from the Kennebec County Sheriff’s Office after a field test showed the substance was negative for heroin.

Kennebec County Sheriff Ken Mason confirmed the test results Tuesday, calling the substance “human remains; a rather unusual manner in which to keep the remains of a loved one, for sure.”

Curtis eventually got his father’s remains back … covered evidence tape.

Curtis joked, saying “This was the first time my father was ever in lockup right here, and it took me forever to get him out of it.”

As for Legendre?

Curtis believes he was coming home from a 20-hour shift and fell asleep at the wheel. He also believes he was knocked unconscious from the airbag hitting him square in the face.

However, the 31-year-old was arrested and released on bail because he was driving without a license due to being a ‘habitual offender.’

Of course you’re also thinking why in the hell were Curtis’ father’s ashes in a plastic bag in the glove compartment of the car in the first place? After all, his father died in Florida several years ago.

Curtis says his sister had recently sent him some of the remains and he was waiting on an urn he had ordered.

Mmhmm.

Josh’s take

I’m writing a note to my future children right now to not keep me in the glove compartment of any piece of machinery.


Josh Helmuth is a sports reporter in St. Louis who contributes to Mandatory.