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Study suggests too many bodies at Chicago cemetery

CHICAGO — Law enforcement officials say a new study shows thousands more people may be buried at a suburban Chicago cemetery than the land is supposed to hold.

Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart says the study suggests the practice of stacking caskets on top of each other or simply discarding remains was far more common at Burr Oak Cemetery than they suspected.

Four former cemetery employees were arrested last year, accused of digging up graves and reselling burial plots.

The study concludes that as many as 147,000 people are buried at Burr Oak — about 9,000 over the capacity of the historic black cemetery in Alsip.

A cemetery official declined to comment, saying he has not seen the study.