Hinds residents up in arms over neighbor's family cemetery on property - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Hinds residents up in arms over neighbor's family cemetery on property

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By  Julie Straw - bio | email | twitter

JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - Ally Mack, Dean of International Studies at Jackson State University, wanted her husband Robert Mack buried on their 17 acre property on Raymond Road.  Neighbors in Western Hills fought it.  In a split vote the Hinds County Board of Supervisors decided against it in early July.  Still, the body of Dr. Mack came to rest on the family property.

"I really couldn't believe that someone would go to this extent.  I did call the funeral home, they did acknowledge that the body was in a mausoleum and placed on the property last Monday," said Western Hills Neighborhood Association President Patrice Donald.

Mack's attorney, Fred Banks, confirmed to WLBT that Ally Mack did erect a mausoleum in her back yard for her 69-year-old husband who died in May.

"I really thought we had come to a conclusion on this. For me to find out she went ahead and this happened.  I am really disappointed," said neighbor Debra Green.  Her house backs up to Mack's property and is separated by a fence.

Several residents nearby worry about decreased property values. "If I was to move, who would want to buy my house in that it is near a family cemetery?" asked Juanita Brown.

Hinds Permit and Zoning Director Darrel McQuirter said state law allows the board of supervisors to approve of "family cemeteries" on agricultural zoned property like Mack's.  The zoning department unanimously approved her request.  The supervisors did not and they have final say.

Juanita Brown filed a formal complaint with Hinds County Friday. "I would like to see the law enforced, we have ordinances for reasons," said Brown.

The Zoning Department is now conducting an investigation.

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