A Minnesota man who lived with the bodies of his dead mother and brother for more than a year said he was traumatized.
Robert James Kuefler, 60, was charged this week with interference with a dead body or scene of death, a misdemeanor, because he allegedly moved his brother's body.
Kuefler told the Associated Press that his mother and brother both died of natural causes in 2015, which was confirmed after their autopsies. In September 2016, White Bear Lake Police found their bodies after they were called to the home to check on the residents inside, reports said.
Officers reportedly immediately encountered the smell of decay and found the skeletal remains of Kuefler's mother, 93-year-old Evelyn Lucille Kuefler, upstairs. In the basement, police said they found the body of Kuefler's twin brother, Richard John Kuefler, which had reached the point of mummification.
"I was traumatized," Kuefler told the AP. "What would you do?"
White Bear Lake Police said when they interviewed Kuefler, he said that he found his brother dead in a chair and that he "eventually moved the body to the bathroom as it was 'in the way,'" according to reports.
Court documents also said that Kuefler sent out a Christmas card in 2015 saying that both his mom and brother were alive but in bad health and were not able to be contacted and didn’t want visitors.
"I am not some nut ball,” Kuefler said. "People think I am, but I'm not. I loved them."
Keufler said his mother wanted to die at home.
"I watched my mother die," he said. "She didn't have any burial plans."
Kuefler was initially arrested last year on suspicion of financial exploitation of a vulnerable adult, but there was apparently no evidence to support the charge, the Star Tribune reported.
White Bear Police Capt. Dale Hager told the Associated Press that police decided to file the misdemeanor charge against Kuefler in part to get him psychological help through the court system, although Keufler reportedly said he doesn’t need counseling.
"This is our way of introducing this case onto the court," Hager said. "We do believe his actions violated the law. Moving the body of his brother disrupted the death scene. We're depending on our partners in the court system to make a good decision."