Police: Man sold stolen brains online

Brains taken from medical museum

INDIANAPOLIS - An Indianapolis man was arrested on theft and drug charges after admitting he stole jars of brain tissue and sold them online, police said.

David Charles, 21, of Indianapolis, told officers with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department that he broke into the Indiana Medical History Museum six times in 2013 and stole jars of human tissue, including human brains.

The tissue was from patients who once lived at the old Central State Hospital. The facility was conceived 168 years ago as a psychiatric treatment center.

Officials were tipped off by a California man who bought six jars of brain matter online and realized they had been taken from the museum, according to the probable cause affidavit.

The San Diego, Calif., buyer said he paid $600, plus $70 for shipping, to purchase the six jars of tissue.

Charles was arrested Dec. 16 after agreeing to sell human tissue to an undercover officer.

Police said a detective met Charles in the parking lot of an Indianapolis Dairy Queen, and arranged to buy a duffle bag containing 48 jars of human tissue.

A pre-trial conference for Charles has been scheduled for Jan. 13.

The Indiana Medical History Museum serves as a modern laboratory to explore the physical causes of disease and mental illness.

The museum is conducting an audit to determine the extent of the loss.

Follow Jack Rinehart on Twitter: @jackrinehart6

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