SVU investigating South Bend abortion doctor
A local abortion doctor under fire is now under investigation. St. Joseph County Prosecutor Mike Dvorak asked the Special Victims Unit to investigate the man who runs South Bend's abortion clinic. But proving whether Dr. Ulrich "George" Klopfer did or did not break any laws may be tough.
It all started last month when St. Joseph County's Right to Life group submitted 1,200 complaints to Indiana's Attorney General and Prosecutor Mike Dvorak. The reports contain omissions of information or paperwork errors from abortion procedures, the group claimed.
Right to Life also says Klopfer illegally reported abortions involving 13-year-olds.
They now have questions about another law that requires every abortion doctor in the state to have admitting privileges to a local hospital or an agreement with a doctor who does.
"I don't know why no one is enforcing this. This is the law. Where are the fines?" asked Right to Life of St. Joseph County Director Jeanette Burdell.
"He comes from Illinois which is where he resides. So a patient of his, in case of complications, needs to have a doctor that can respond to her care - for her sake and her health in a very timely manner," Burdette continued.
WSBT checked - there is no record of Klopfer's back up doctor at the local or state health departments, the professional licensing agency or anywhere else. No one keeps track of whether abortion doctors really do have admitting privileges or a back up doctor.
"It appears that there is no oversight to that portion of the law. In other words, there's no state registry for that," said Indiana Professional Licensing Agency spokeswoman Sue Swayze.
When WSBT reached out to Klopfer at his Gary clinic Monday and asked who is back up doctor is in St. Joseph County or one of its adjacent counties, as the law mandates, he refused to answer the question then explained why.
"Now a days the majority of medical school graduates become employed in some big corporation where the hospital or otherwise controls and dictates everything you can and cannot do," Klopfer said. "For me to divulge information that's not necessary, I will not."
He also said he has to keep some parts of his life and the lives of those who help him private for safety reasons.
"I've been stalked, I've been shot at, I've had three bus loads of people in front of my house. No, I'm not going to advertise. I'm sorry, I'm not running for political office, Klopfer added."
He said he could understand the Right to Life concerns if he had a bad track record, but added that he does not. He still has a license to practice in Indiana but because of comments he recently made to a newspaper about an abortion he performed on a 13-year-old, he's been asked to appear before the state's medical licensing board next week.
Klopfer also has abortion clinics in Ft. Wayne and Gary but he's not legally allowed to perform abortions in Ft. Wayne right now. That happened after Right to Life raised similar concerns in Allen County, causing Klopfer's back up doctor there to quit.
Allen County is the only one in the state that has its own local back up doctor ordinance. Abortion doctors there are required to report the back up doctor's name.