Probation ordered for father who let son decompose in kitchen

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TEXARKANA, Texas–A father who left his son’s corpse to decompose in his kitchen for years was sentenced Tuesday to a five-year term of probation in Bowie County.

David McMichael, 67, was arrested March 29 on a charge of abuse of a corpse by New Boston, Texas, police after skeletonized remains were found in the kitchen of his home in the 1200 block of Merrilll Street. According to a probable cause affidavit, police were called to the house by a family member who reported not seeing David McMichael or his adult son, Jason McMichael, for some time.

When police arrived to conduct the welfare check, they asked McMichael if he knew why they were there and McMichael told them it was because his son is dead. Officers found skeletal remains on the kitchen floor.

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McMichael was sentenced to five years deferred adjudication probation at a hearing Tuesday before 202nd District Judge John Tidwell. He pleaded guilty to abuse of a corpse in May.

If McMichael successfully completes his term, he won’t have a final felony conviction on his record.

McMichael told officers his son always slept on a pallet in the kitchen floor and that he found him dead there one morning in May 2018. Jason McMichael was born in August 1977, according to an online obituary on Legacy.com.

When asked why he didn’t call anyone to report the death, McMichael told officers he didn’t have a phone. When officers asked why he didn’t borrow a neighbor’s phone, McMichael told them that he does not know his neighbors.

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