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Daughter cremates mom on improvised barbecue

Then fashions necklace from chunk of skull

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The daughter and grandson of a Northern California woman decided to forego the usual funerary niceties when 84-year-old granny popped her clogs in December last year, and cremated her on a "improvised barbecue", LA Times reports

Kathleen Theresa Allmond, 50, and her son, Tony Ray, 30, allegedly disposed of Ramona Yolanda Allmond in a concrete culvert on their ten-acre almond orchard in Corning, Tehama County. They had previously "used the culvert to cook their Thanksgiving turkey".

Ramona Allmond's son in Southern California - who had not heard from his mother since December - raised the alarm last Saturday, having become particularly worried when relatives in Corning visited the farmhouse in September and "couldn't give him a plausible explanation as to where Grandma was".

His sister apparently called later, pretending to be their mother, and "assured him that everything was fine".

Sheriff's Capt Paul Hosler said police "believe that the mother-and-son duo kept the woman's body on her bedroom floor for a week after she died" - although there is no suspicion of foul play in her death.

Kathleen Allmond did, however, confess to officers she'd "fashioned a necklace with a chunk of the woman's skull" and then "posted a MySpace photo of herself wearing it while holding a flute". The ritual significance of the flute is not noted.

Hosler admitted: "We've had some strange stuff go on here. About 25 years ago, we had a guy and his wife who kidnapped a gal and kept her under the bed for a couple of years - but I guess this is a little more bizarre."

Allmond and her son were jailed on "suspicion of elder abuse and embezzlement". Additional charges are being researched, according to Capt Hosler. ®

Barbienote

In case you're wondering what kind of people would barbecue granny, the LA Times has mugshots here.

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