Wayne County ME: Identifying remains of 11 fetuses could take months

Posted at 1:12 PM, Oct 16, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-16 14:02:49-04

The Wayne County Medical Examiner announced Tuesday the process to identify the remains of 11 fetuses "could take weeks or months."

The Medical Examiner is currently working with local and state officials to identify the baby remains discovered in the ceiling of the former Cantrell Funeral Home Friday night. 

“Due to the conditions of the remains, the best path toward positive identification is finding existing records. The fact that these remains reached a funeral home means there should be a record somewhere that can help lead us to identifying information,” said Dr. Carl Schmidt, Wayne County’s chief medical examiner.

Because the remains are in mummified conditions, identification will depend primarily on the availability of records. 

“Most of the fetuses have some kind of identifying label from a hospital that we are hoping can help lead us to a positive identification,” said Schmidt. “The identification process will primarily rely on matching fetuses to funeral home paperwork or to medical records. We are working as quickly as possible, but the process could take weeks or months, depending on the information in the records, if they exist at all," said Schmidt.