Mother arrested for intervening in 14-year-old's abortion

The Madison County Record Mar. 25, 2005, 12:57am

(Reprinted with permission from the Illinois Leader)

A southern Illinois woman was arrested March 17 after trying to intervene on behalf of her 14-year old daughter's effort to have an abortion. The girl was allegedly taken to an abortion clinic by the mother of the man allegedly to have impregnated the 14-year old.

According to the girl's mother, her 14-year old daughter was called off from school in Madison County by a woman posing as the girl's “grandmother.” The woman took the girl from her home only minutes before the girl’s mother returned home from work.

It was later determined that the woman who had posed as the "grandmother" to the school authorities was the mother of the male who had fathered the unborn child the 14-year old girl was carrying. The age of the male has not been released.

When the parents were notified their pregnant daughter was not at school, they suspected she had been taken to the Hope Abortion Clinic in Granite City. The parents and grandfather were the only persons authorized to request school absence for the 14-year-old female.

“My husband and I rushed to the abortion clinic where we saw our daughter’s name on the roster and the time she had checked in,” the mother said. She then went into the clinic and searched a room filled with young women awaiting abortions but did not see her daughter.

She took a seat near the main desk and said, “I was told I could not prove my daughter was there so I began calling her name. A medical tech at the clinic told me, ‘It’s your daughter’s rights, it’s her body. You have no rights.’”

After continuing to call out her daughter’s name and telling her “don’t do it,” authorities were called and the mother was arrested.

The 14-year old told her mother she could hear her but when she asked employees to give her mother a message, they came back to the room and told her that her mother had left.

Angela Michaels, of Small Victories Ministry, was tipped off as to what was happening at the Hope clinic. According to Michaels, she witnessed police placing the mother’s hands behind her back, taking her into custody. As the police were putting the mother in the squad car, she was crying out, “Please, please, help daughter is in there.”

Michaels said, “Exactly one hour later at 10:35 a.m., the 14-year old emerged from the clinic looking disheveled. The 14-year old told us that employees kept her in a quiet room until the procedure was performed and she was told that her mother had left.”

Employees assured this girl on her departure, “No one will ever know you were here, we’ll bury your records.”

In the meantime, the woman who had taken the girl for the abortion was slipped out the back door of the clinic.

The police in the community in which the family lives allegedly told the girl's mom that they couldn't intervene despite her making a charge that her daughter had been raped (by statute) because the charge was stale--seven weeks after the incident. They did tell the girl's mom that, while she had no right to stop the abortion, she did have a right to go into the clinic and speak to her daughter.

The parents are expected to file charges.

Reported by Illinois Leader correspondent Joyce Morrison. For legal reasons, the names of the family and the 14-year old girl that are the subject of this story have been withheld at this time.

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