Man admits keeping body of pensioner in freezer for two years

Damion Johnson preserved John Wainwright's body in the freezer of a flat in Birmingham between 2018 and 2020.

Man admits keeping pensioner’s body in freezer for two years but denies stealing money Google Maps

A man has admitted keeping a pensioner’s body in a freezer for nearly two years but denies using his bank card to obtain cash.

Damion Johnson pleaded guilty at Derby Crown Court on Tuesday to keeping 71-year-old John Wainwright‘s body in the freezer of a property in Birmingham.

Mr Wainwright died in September 2018 and was discovered in August 2020.

The offence is believed to have taken place when the pair lived in a flat in Cleveland Tower, Holywell Head, in Birmingham city centre, but Mr Wainwright’s cause of death is yet to be ascertained.

Wearing a Las Vegas Raiders jacket, a chequered shirt, patterned trousers and deck shoes, Johnson, of Sun Street, Derby, admitted one count of preventing the lawful and decent burial of a dead body between September 1, 2018 and August 22, 2020.

But the 52-year-old denied three counts of fraud by false representation concerning using Mr Wainwright’s bank card to withdraw money from cash machines, pay for goods and transfer money to his own account between September 23, 2018 and May 7, 2020.

Judge Shaun Smith KC told Johnson he will face trial on November 7.

When asked by the judge what Johnson’s defence will be, Raglan Ashton, mitigating, said: “He says he was not acting dishonestly, namely that he maintains that he was entitled to the funds in Mr Wainwright’s account.

“The arrangement was that monies would be paid jointly into Mr Wainwright’s account, so essentially he maintains that it was his funds in Mr Wainwright’s account and in short he was entitled to them.”

Johnson remains on bail.

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