Disinterred remains won't be identified

Authorities in Illinois say they are done collecting evidence at Burr Oak Cemetery and admit that families may never know what happened to their loved ones' remains after an estimated 300 grave sites were desecrated.

"The closure that a lot of people expected . . . you're not going to get here," Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart said at a news conference at the cemetery Friday. "It's unfortunate. We wish it were otherwise."

The sheriff's office and the FBI's Chicago office had been collecting evidence at the cemetery near Alsip since allegations surfaced last month that cemetery employees had dug up bodies, relocated them to a vacant lot on the premises and resold the plots for profit. Four employees have been charged with dismembering a human body and other counts.

The investigation is ongoing, and Dart said it could lead to additional charges.

He said investigators had collected 1,200 pieces of evidence, including bones, pieces of burial vaults and headstones.

But because cemetery records were found to be disintegrated and rotting, investigators will not be able to identify the remains, he said.



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