/More Than 2,200 Preserved Fetuses Found at Property of Dead Doctor, Officials Say – The New York Times

More Than 2,200 Preserved Fetuses Found at Property of Dead Doctor, Officials Say – The New York Times

The family of a doctor in Illinois discovered more than 2,200 medically preserved fetuses at his property a little over a week after his death, the authorities said.

The Will County Coroner’s Office received a call on Thursday from a lawyer representing the family of the doctor, Ulrich Klopfer, who died on Sept. 3, the Will County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release.

While going through Dr. Klopfer’s property, the family found 2,246 medically preserved fetal remains, the release said. At the request of the family, the lawyer asked the coroner’s office to remove the remains.

It was unclear how the fetuses were preserved, where on Dr. Klopfer’s property they were discovered or where exactly the property was. Public records showed the doctor owned a home in Crete, Ill., a village about 35 miles south of Chicago. The release only said officials responded to “an address in unincorporated Will County.”

The coroner’s office took possession of the remains. The release said that the doctor’s family was cooperating with the investigation and that there was no evidence that any medical procedures took place at the property.

A call to the Will County Sheriff’s Office was not returned and attempts to reach the Will County Coroner’s Office were unsuccessful. A person who answered the phone at Dr. Klopfer’s residence declined to comment.

Dr. Klopfer’s license history revealed that he was an osteopathic physician whose license was suspended for failure to keep abreast of current professional theory or practice, according to Indiana state records.

He had a practice in South Bend, Ind. and was also licensed to practice in Illinois but his license to practice there expired in the 1990s, according to state records.

State records showed that Dr. Klopfer had had licenses in Fort Wayne and Gary, Ind., where he performed abortions, The Journal Gazette of Fort Wayne reported. It described him as “likely Indiana’s most prolific abortion doctor in history with numbers going into the tens of thousands of procedures in multiple counties over several decades.”

The Women’s Pavilion, the abortion clinic where Dr. Klopfer worked, closed in 2016, The South Bend Tribune reported. Dr. Klopfer stopped performing abortions in November 2015, the site said.

The Journal Gazette said that Dr. Klopfer received a six-month license suspension in 2016 after a hearing with the Indiana Medical Licensing Board. He was found guilty of five of the nine charges he faced.

During the hearing, Dr. Klopfer told the story of an abortion he performed at a hospital on a 10-year-old girl who had been raped by her uncle.

Dr. Klopfer had not told the authorities and had let the girl return home with her parents, who chose not to seek charges against the relative, The Journal Gazette reported.

Dr. Klopfer also told the board that in his 43 years of practice, he had never lost a patient.

“Women get pregnant, men don’t,” Dr. Klopfer said during the hearing. “We need to respect women making a decision that they think is best in their life. I’m not here to dictate to anybody. I’m not here to judge anybody.”