Former employees of the abortion practitioner who killed a woman in a botched 33-week abortion say he frequently broke state health and medical laws when he ran an abortion business in Nebraska.
Jennifer McKenna Morbelli, a 29-year-old woman from New Rochelle, New York died from a botched 33-week abortion. As LifeNews reported last week, papers uncovered in trash bins outside the abortion facility where a woman was killed in a botched late-term abortion are leading to questions about whether she was instructed to not go to a local emergency room after the failed abortion.
Before he was hired by a Maryland abortion business to do abortions in Germantown, LeRoy Carhart ran an abortion clinic in a suburb of Omaha, Nebraska. In 2009, Carhart laid off nearly half his staff as he faced a potential investigation from state officials. Former staffers came forward then to describe what they call illegal and unsafe conditions at his abortion center.
The former abortion facility employees say they participated in abortions that were done without proper licensing. The women gave sworn statements about illegal and unsafe activity at Carhart’s abortion clinic.
Two of the unnamed women who assisted in Carhart’s abortions say they started IVs for him even though they are not registered nurses or certified licensed practical nurses, as required by state law.
A third former employee, who was fired in 2003, confirmed that she frequently administered medication intravenously although she wasn’t a certified LPN.
The women also allege that general unclean conditions, including dried blood on surgical instruments, were the norm at Carhart’s center. The women also told of missing narcotics, illicit drug use by employees, and illegal post-viability abortions.
The women worked for Carhart at various times, yet they all made similar, if not identical allegations when interviewed.
Operation Rescue tells LifeNews.com the former employees tell a different story.
“One former employee told of incidents where Carhart falsified the gestational age of viable babies in order to circumvent the law. This account matches information uncovered by Operation Rescue during an undercover investigation at the now-closed Women’s Health Care Services in Wichita, Kansas, where Carhart once worked,” the group said.
“The worker caught falsifying gestational ages in Kansas now works for Carhart at his Bellevue, Nebraska, abortion clinic,” the organization added.
Nebraska Right to Life director Julie Schmit-Albin told LifeNews.com in 2009 that she knew of improper practices at Carhart’s abortion center that dated back to 2002.
“In 2002, when the former Planned Parenthood Lincoln clinic director turned insider information over to us, he made the same allegation,” she said.
Those allegations included “that untrained people off the street were doing medical procedures there for which they were not licensed.”
“We turned that info, along with other concerns he had about OSHA violations, Medicare fraud, etc. over to Nebraska DHHS [and other state officials],” she said. “DHHS came back with a cursory slap on the wrist for Planned Parenthood.”
“None of the stuff about unlicensed workers ever came out nor was it revealed if their ‘investigation’ found anything,” she said. “In other words, in Nebraska, nursing homes and group homes are inspected on a regular schedule some by unannounced visits, but not so with abortion facilities.”
Another employee also alleged in 2009 that Carhart engaged in illegal activities at his Nebraska-based abortion business and submitted an affidavit testifying to the illegal acts she witnessed. She said Carhart and his staff told her to commit illegal acts during her employment at his Abortion and Contraception Clinic of Nebraska.
This employee left her job voluntarily and indicated she had no medical background but routinely assisted with surgeries, started IVs, and dispensed medication without the proper credentials. She also indicated that she believed that Carhart was, at times, chemically impaired while on duty.
Following a new probe started by local officials, the Maryland Attorney General has opened an investigation into the late-term abortion practitioner who killed a Morbelli. The Maryland Attorney General’s office is not specifically looking into Morbelli’s deathbut it is looking at illegal dumping by the abortion clinic that could result in fines or other form of punishment.
Among the papers was a document instructing women not to go to the ER in the event of an emergency, but instead to “call and we will meet you at the clinic,” which is clearly dangerous medical advice. The number given in the instructions has now been connected to a business Carhart owns.
The Maryland Attorney General’s office notified the Maryland Coalition for Life and Operation Rescue that is has late-term abortion practitioner LeRoy Carhart and Germantown Reproductive Health Services under an active criminal investigation for illegal dumping, based on complaints made by both groups last year. This investigation is separate to ongoing investigations into Morbelli’s death, OR informed LifeNews, that are currently underway by the State Medical Examiner, the Montgomery Police Department, and the state’s Office of Health Care Quality.
David Williams of the Maryland Attorney General’s Environmental Crimes Unit contacted Janet Kotowski, a pro-life sidewalk counselor in Germantown, to notify her that an investigation was underway. Kotowski wrote a letter last November asking the agency to look into illegal dumping of biohazardous waste and private patient information at Germantown Reproductive Health Center in follow up to a complaint filed by Operation Rescue in July, 2012.
Cheryl Sullenger of Operation Rescue also spoke with Williams yesterday and has agreed to turn over unedited video-taped evidence of the illegal dumping documented last year to aid in his investigation.
“This is a very serious criminal investigation,” Williams told Sullenger.
In July, 2012, Operation Rescue filed a formal complaint with the Environmental Crimes Unit and released edited video and photographic evidence that showed GRHS and Carhart engaged in the illegal dumping on a routine basis. Evidence included:
1. Documents containing private patient information concerning birth control prescriptions and abortion procedures, as well as copies of patient driver’s licenses.
2. Bloody refuse blood clots and possible human fetal remains.
3. Drug control violations.
“For years we have documented Carhart’s abortion abuses. This time we pray authorities will quickly act before he has the opportunity to kill again,” said Sullenger.
Other incidents documented by Operation Rescue include the 2005 third-trimester abortion death of Christin Gilbert in Kansas, unsafe abortion practices reported by former Carhart employees in Nebraska, and the falsifying of information to gain licensure in Maryland.
Sullenger continued, “The tragic death of Mrs. Morbelli from a botched 33-week abortion may be the catalyst that will finally bring Carhart to justice. It’s too bad that a woman had to die before authorities would sit up and take notice.”
Morbelli died as the result of fatal complications suffered during an abortion at 33 weeks at the hand of late-term abortion practitioner LeRoy Carhart. The abortion took place at the Germantown Reproductive Health Center in Germantown, Maryland. Her 33-week-old preborn daughter, Madison Leigh, died in the failed legal abortion as well.
Morbelli arrived at Germantown Reproductive Health Center on February 3 to start the abortion process. Local pro-life advocates protesting outside saw her every day until yesterday, and described her as appearing “pale and weak.”
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By the morning of February 7, she began suffering chest pain and other discomforts, the group informed LifeNews. Her attempts to reach Carhart were unsuccessful. The woman was taken by her family from her hotel to a nearby hospital emergency room at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital at approximately 5:00 a.m. Efforts by hospital staff to contact Carhart or get informational assistance from the abortion clinic were unsuccessful and he did not return a handful of calls.
Morbelli, a full-time substitute teacher at the Church Street School in White Plains, New York, suffered massive internal bleeding into her abdominal cavity. She slipped into a Code Blue condition approximately six times before finally succumbing to her injuries at around 9:30 a.m.
Investigators in Maryland said that, while the probe into Jennifer Morbelli’s death is ongoing, there is currently no indication of criminal activity.
“I can confirm that, yes, there is a death investigation being coordinated by the Medical Examiner’s Office and the Montgomery Police Department has been notified,” said Lucille Baur, a spokeswoman for the police department.
Bruce Goldfarb, a spokesman for the medical examiner, said the office was “investigating the cause and manner of death” of Morbelli, but would not provide further details.
“This is a routine death investigation,” he said. “Anytime somebody dies during a medical procedure it’s referred to this office. So it’s a routine matter. There is no timetable. Things happen when they happen.”