Feb. 12 (UPI) -- Thousands of fetal remains found in Illinois after the death of a former Indiana abortion doctor were buried in a ceremony on Wednesday.
Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill was joined by more than 100 people in South Bend as they buried the 2,411 sets of remains found in the home of Dr. Ulrich Klopfer who performed abortions at clinics in South Bend, Gary and Fort Wayne from 2000 to 2002.
"While it would have been preferable to return the remains to each city where the procedure took place, that was not possible, due to the degradation of the remains and the unreliability of the records," Hill said.
Klopfer's family members found the remains after he died in September while they went through his possessions at his Will County, Ill., home.
The remains were stored in small plastic medical bags filled with a chemical preservative called formalin and placed in cardboard boxes.
Hill said his office is examining the records kept by Klopfer, many of which were "spoiled, destroyed or wet" but added there was little hope of discovering his motive.
"The best evidence of the why certainly died with Dr. Klopfer in September," he said. "There's no answer for that and I don't know that we ever will get an answer for that."
Hill noted that the state passed a law in 2016 requiring burial or cremation of fetal remains resulting from abortion, but the laws at the time when the remains originated from were unclear.
"There was certainly a variety of methods. Burial was an option at that time. They would consider it bio-hazardous waste," he said. "One thing is clear, there was no authority to transport the remains across state lines and there was no authority to store them in the residence, in his garage or in the trunk of his car with rodent feces."