Man admits digging up grave at Carlton Cemetery in Barnsley

Wayne Joselyn/Carlton Cemetery in Barnsley
Wayne Joselyn admitted disturbing the grave at Carlton Cemetery. Credit: South Yorkshire Police/ITV News

A man has pleaded guilty to digging up the grave of two members of the same family.

Wayne Joselyn admitted a charge of causing a public nuisance, by disturbing the grave of Matthew and Ethel Goodwin at Carlton Cemetery, in Barnsley, between 24 and 29 April this year.

He also pleaded guilty to causing criminal damage to the plot.

South Yorkshire Police launched an investigation in early May after a member of the public noticed the grave partially dug up.

They cordoned off the site and erected a forensic tent while investigations were carried out for several days.

Officers later revealed that they had to exhume Ethel Goodwin's remains because of the incident. Her body was later reburied.

Maud Goodwin's body was exhumed and later reburied. Credit: South Yorkshire Police

The Goodwins' family paid tribute to police, saying in a statement: "The family would like to thank each and every person that has been involved in this horrific case, for the work that has been necessary and for the work that needs to continue.

"The support we have received and the respect for us and our loved ones that have been disturbed has been beyond anything anyone could imagine.

"There are not many angels in this world but each and every person that has been involved are just that: angels. They have gone above and beyond their duty."

The court heard 43-year-old Joselyn, who is from Sheffield, is already serving a prison sentence of 55 months in relation to unrelated offences.

Joselyn, who has a string of previous convictions, was jailed in September after he admitted several burglary and fraud offences, two shop thefts and an assault.

Judge Sarah Wright was told the grave-digging offences were not targeted at the Goodwin family.

She adjourned the case until 20 January, when Joselyn will be sentenced.

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