UNIONTOWN (KDKA) — A Fayette County funeral director is going to prison after pleading guilty to ripping off elderly customers.

Stephen Kezmarsky, 51, the owner of Kezmarsky Funeral Home in Uniontown, has been sentenced to eight years in prison and 20 years of probation.

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

Last October, Kezmarsky pleaded guilty to charges of theft and forgery.

In total, he entered a guilty plea for 172 counts. Investigators say he stole more than $500,000.

The prosecution says he used that money to on things like airfare and alcohol.

At Tuesday’s sentencing hearing, Kezmarsky took the stand, apologizing. He told the court that he’s not “a bad person, just a bad businessman.”

But family members of his victims say he was “motivated by abject greed.”

“He’s scum, plain and simple,” said Diana McDowell, whose parents were victims. “He preyed on old people.”

McDowell said Kezmarsky sold her parents a prepaid funeral plan, but when her father died, the money was gone and Kezmarsky provided excuses.

Fayette County District Attorney Rich Bauer says Kezmarsky misappropriated the money to build his business and cover personal expenses.

“He’s a thief,” Bauer said. “He admitted he’s a thief, not the great guy everybody was professing.”

Last June, Bauer filed additional charges of abuse of a corpse and tampering with records against Kezmarsky.

The DA said boxes of cremated remains, some labeled and others unlabeled, were discovered in a storage unit, along with records from the funeral home.