Family gets locked inside Prince George's County cemetery - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Family gets locked inside Prince George's County cemetery

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CLINTON, Md. -

The Archdiocese of Washington is apologizing to a Maryland woman who says she and her family got locked inside a Catholic Church-owned cemetery in Prince George's County.

"It was frightening," says Rhonda Kinney. "Because I had to do some critical thinking to say, 'How am I going to get myself out of this situation that someone put me in?'"

Kinney visited Resurrection Cemetery in Clinton, Md., Thursday night to visit her son's grave -- on what would have been Nick Anderson's 30th birthday.

"We got here at 6:45 p.m.," Kinney tells us. "The young lady at the gate said we're closing at 7 p.m. We said okay. We're going to make it short and sweet. We just want to put some flowers on my son's grave."

Kinney says she was there with other adult relatives and kept their visit short.

"She drove past us and looked us in the eye when we were putting the flowers down,” she says. “So when we were ready to leave and got to the gate, the gate was locked. We were like 'Oh wow.' She knew we were in here. She gave us facial contact to know that we were in here."

Trapped inside the cemetery with darkness fast approaching, Kinney says she didn't know what to do. So she called 911 and dispatchers sent the fire department. They went out and cut the lock that bolted the iron gates shut.

"I thought it was totally disrespectful on the young lady's behalf because she knew we were in here." Kinney says. "And to lock the gate on us -- I think it was purposely done."

Kinney came back Friday to meet with cemetery managers.

"They were very apologetic,” says Kinney. “She said she was going to do an investigation."

And that is what management tells FOX 5. In a statement to FOX 5 News, the archdiocese says it "regrets the incident that occurred. We take this matter very seriously and have apologized to the family involved. We are looking into the incident to ensure the proper protocols that are in place are followed."

Kinney says that's all she wants.

"I was very emotionally distraught about it and I don't want it to happen to the next person that comes to visit their loved one,” she says.

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