- Associated Press - Thursday, February 6, 2014

PENN HILLS, Pa. (AP) - The owner of a Pittsburgh-area tombstone business has been jailed on theft and fraud charges because the district attorney says the man didn’t deliver at least 51 monuments for which customers paid him $92,000.

Instead, Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala Jr. contends 52-year-old Curtis Eakman spent the money at restaurants and nightclubs, or on jewelry, and filed to deliver the custom-made headstones.

Eakman remained jailed Thursday and faces a preliminary hearing Feb. 14.

Eakman denied the charges shortly before his arraignment Wednesday saying, “It’s not true. The tombstones are finished.”

Instead, Eakman claims he just hasn’t delivered them because he claims investigators “illegally” locked him out of his business since serving a search warrant last month.

Eakman started Penn Hills Monuments five years ago with his ex-wife, but has owned it himself since 2012.

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