By Beth Lawrence
A local funeral home owner was arrested on charges of theft and had his operating permit pulled by the state for an unrelated matter.
Daryl Keith McMahan, owner of Western Carolina Funeral and Creation Service, 59 Cherry St., was arrested for 38 counts of obtaining property by false pretense, according to Sylva Police Chief Chris Hatton.
The warrants for his arrest were issued in Henderson County.
On Monday a compliance officer with the N.C. Board of Funeral Services contacted McMahan on an unrelated matter.
“Sylva Police assisted by contacting the business owner, Darryl Keith McMahan, and arranging for all parties to meet at the business,” Hatton said. “During the service of this inspection warrant, it was learned that Mr. McMahan had numerous outstanding warrants for his arrest from Henderson County.”
The Board of Funeral Services was attempting to serve notice that McMahan’s permit to operate had been suspended, according to documents obtained by The Herald.
The documents allege that McMahan’s business had been operating for more than 30 days without either a licensed funeral director or a person who is eligible to serve as a licensed manager. The documents also state there is evidence to show that the funeral home had been offering services during that time.
According to the Board of Funeral Services, the former licensed funeral director served from May 28, to July 22, 2019 and was the only licensed employee at the company.
Under state law the business was required to either pause operation or hire a new licensed director or manager within 30 days. The notice alleges that McMahan did neither.
The suspension was issued on Sept. 11. McMahan has a hearing with the Board of Funeral Services on Oct. 12 to answer the charges.
McMahan was booked into the Jackson County Detention Center for the Henderson County charges and received a $25,000 secured bond.
The charges were the result of an investigation by the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office into claims that McMahan, owner of Custom Monuments of Fletcher, took money to create grave markers and never delivered them.