Documents show former county commissioner Justin Ford owes $20,000 in penalties

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Former county commissioner Justin Ford owes tens of thousands of dollars to the state for penalties with his business, and the state says he hasn't paid any of it.

Ford has been in trouble with the law before on the criminal side. He entered an Alford plea to domestic assault in 2017. Now he's in trouble on the civil side.

State documents say his business, the Justin Ford Funeral Home, owes more than $21,000 in civil penalties and hearing costs. It comes after The Department of Commerce and Insurance says the business moved from a location on Shelby Drive to Knight Arnold Road.

The funeral home's accused of not having a fixed place of business for about two weeks and not telling the state board, which isn't allowed when caring for and preparing human bodies.

The violations are from 2016. Documents say there were court hearings where no one from the funeral home showed up. In December 2018, the state ordered the business to pay the fines within two months. But state workers say Ford hasn't paid a penny.

We went to the funeral home Monday, but no on was there. We also called. A man who answered the phone said Ford wasn't available and they weren't aware of any fines.

We also found the funeral home's business license shows to be inactive on the Secretary of State's website. Court records show there were also two complaints made against the business in 2017.

We requested copies of those complaints along with the current business license of information.

Ford did not seek re-election to the Shelby County Commission in 2018.

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