COLUMBUS, OH (WOIO) - Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine says his office has wrapped up its investigation into the alleged sale of fetal tissue by Planned Parenthood affiliates. While the investigation did not find any indication that fetal tissue was sold by Planned Parenthood affiliates in Ohio, it did reveal that aborted fetuses from the facilities are ultimately disposed of in landfill sites.
Earlier this year, DeWine directed his Charitable Law Section to investigate whether Planned Parenthood affiliates in Bedford Heights, Cincinnati, and Columbus were violating Ohio law by selling fetal tissue, or abortion trafficking, in violation of Ohio Revised Code 2919.14. The Charitable Law Section requested documents and financial records from Planned Parenthood organizations, as well as companies with whom they contracted. The investigation did not find that fetal tissue was sold by Planned Parenthood affiliates in Ohio.
The investigation showed that the disposal methods documented by the Planned Parenthood affiliates violate Ohio Administrative Code 3701-47-05, adopted in 1975, which requires that a "fetus shall be disposed of in a humane manner."
Specifically: All three Ohio Planned Parenthood affiliates have sent fetal remains to companies, which then disposed of the fetuses in landfills. During a press conference Friday afternoon, DeWine said the fetuses were steam cooked before disposal.
Additionally, the Planned Parenthood facility in Bedford Heights stated it uses only one company for disposal. However, that company stated to investigators it does not accept fetal remains for disposal as a corporate policy.
"Disposing of aborted fetuses from an abortion by sending them to a landfill is callous and completely inhumane," said DeWine. "It is important the public be aware that these practices are taking place at these Ohio facilities."
In response to DeWine's report, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio, Stephanie Kight, issued the following statement:
DeWine referred his investigative findings to the Ohio Department of Health for further action.
"Our job was to find the facts. Those are the facts and we've made them public today," said DeWine at the press conference.
Since there is no criminal or civil penalty, the director of Health has asked the Attorney General's Office to apply for an injunction against the three Ohio Planned Parenthood facilities. DeWine says lawyers are now preparing a legal action, which will be filed in a court of common pleas.
"This is a very narrowly crafted asking for an injunction from prohibiting them from disposing of fetuses in this manner. And that is all it will be doing," said DeWine.
According to DeWine, it will be up to the director of Health to adopt the rules for abortions, including the proper way to dispose of fetuses.
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