Ila Solomon now sits in jail after allegedly living with her late husband’s corpse for nine months while she continued to collect his Social Security checks and veteran benefits. This behavior is especially bizarre because, seeing as she is his legal widow, she would have been entitled to them anyway. However, Solomon claimed she kept the death a secret so that she could fulfill her husband's dying wish of being eaten by birds.

Solomon initially lied to the police when they first inquired on Gerald “Scooter” Gavan's whereabouts. WNEM reported she told officers that Gavan was away at the Kentucky Derby with her sister and brother-in-law. When officers asked of his health, Solomon lied once again, informing them that her husband had previously suffered from a stroke and was now in an assisted living complex. Wary of her stories, the officers entered Solomon’s household, where they found Gavan’s body under a tarp covered by bed sheets and a powdery substance that seemed to be lye.

Although modern-day forensics can accurately name a body’s time of death to nearly the hour a heart stopped beating, Solomon, 54, tried to say that “dehumidifiers, rats, and flies” had accelerated the decomposition of her husband’s body so much that what appeared to be nine months of death was actually only five days, Indy Star reported. Interestingly enough, investigators didn’t buy the story and Solomon was charged with “failure to report a dead body.”

The death of Gavan, who was 34 years her senior, marked the fourth time that Solomon would become a widow. Solomon said she knew that failing to report his death was a crime but said she had done so because his last wish was not to be buried but to be eaten by birds, Indy Star reported. Unsurprisingly, the birds weren’t too keen on eating Gavan’s body, and according to a weeping Solomon in her interview with WTSP, “the birds only got as far as the air conditioner.”

Instead of being eaten, the body rotted for months on the living room floor. Doing so left a disturbing stain on the hard wood floor. As of now, the true cause of Gavan’s death remains unknown.

According to How Stuff Works, the environment in which a body is placed, such as bodies buried underground, especially in clay or other substances, would prevent air from reaching the body. On the other hand, bodies submerged in water would decompose at nearly twice the normal rate. Still, even water isn’t likely to make five days' decomposition look like nine months, as Solomon had originally claimed. The stain on Solomon’s floor, as seen in the video, was caused by tiny bacteria already inside the body breaking down Gavan's organs after death.