The discovery of the decomposed body of a 1-year-old girl got her father, Eric Warfel, charged with abuse of a corpse. A cable installer went into Warfel’s Medina, Ohio apartment on Wed. to repair some equipment when he noticed the “badly decomposed” body of a child inside a crib in one of the rooms.
Warfel is being charged with abuse of a corpse — a fifth-degree felony; other charges are expected to come down the line as the investigation continues. The Medina Police Department confirmed in a statement that the body belonged to the man’s 1-year-old daughter, Ember Warfel.
NBC News reports July 30 that the cable installer notified police after he discovered the body. Authorities found Warfel at a shopping center in Westlake, Ohio with his 7-year-old daughter at the time, according to the report. The girl’s grandparents now have custody of her.
After Eric Warfel was charged, he told authorities that their daughters’ mother lives in New York. The child’s body was sent to the Cuyahoga County Coroner for an autopsy to determine the cause of death.
A $1 million bond has been set for Warfel since the state is ruling him as a flight risk. Warfel informed law enforcement that Ember died on, or around, June 18. He said he didn’t call police or get medical attention for the girl because he was trying to keep her death from the family. He further admitted to placing trash in the baby’s bedroom to mask the smell of the rotting body.
It was also learned that another child of Warfel’s died in 2013 — 5-month-old, Erin Delynn Warfel. The child’s cause of death was listed as “sudden unexplained infant death” with a “manner undetermined, according to the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner’s Office,” according to the report.
It’s unclear what Eric Warfel will be charged with in addition to abuse of a corpse as the investigation progresses.