Headstones used to ward off vagrants bear real names

May 20, 2013 at 4:23 PM

HOUSTON, May 20 (UPI) -- A Houston property owner said he did not know the phony headstones he installed to ward off vagrants bore the names and information of real people.

The property owner, who asked not to be named, said he installed the headstones on his grassy lot of land near the highway about a year ago to keep vagrants from setting up camp on the property, ABCNews.com reported Monday.

The man said he purchased the headstones from a local monument company, but he did not realize they bore the names and information of actual deceased people.

The man said he regrets any offense caused.

Wayne Chappell, the brother of Johnny Mack Chappell, whose name is inscribed on one of the stones, said his family is amused by the decoy headstone. He said he believes his brother would also have a laugh at the situation.

"He would get his friends and have a beer party next to it or something," Wayne Chappell said.

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