Planned Parenthood Attacks Attorney Who Filed Sex Abuse Case
by Paul Nowak
LifeNews.com Staff Writer
October 22, 2003
Sacramento, CA (LifeNews.com) — Planned Parenthood has launched a vicious attack on a pro-life attorney that could ruin him and the public-interest firm for which he worked.
San Diego attorney Richard Ackerman filed a 15-count lawsuit alleging that Planned Parenthood and two of its California affiliates violated the state’s Child Abuse and Reporting Act by failing to report suspected cases of sexual abuse and statutory rape. Attorneys for the Planned Parenthood California affiliates have filed for sanctions against Ackerman totaling over $30,000, saying that the suit is "frivolous" and without supporting evidence. Ackerman has stated if the court rules in Planned Parenthood’s favor, he and his wife will have to seriously consider bankruptcy.
"If a judge is going to sanction me for doing the right thing, I would rather pay the $30,000 than to have not done the right thing," Ackerman told WorldNetDaily.
"Mr. Ackerman has not one shred of evidence, not one infinitesimal piece of evidence to support his outrageous claims," James McElroy, the attorney who filed the sanction for the San Diego-Riverside affiliate of Planned Parenthood, said in an interview with WorldNetDaily.
Ackerman has stated that he has six boxes of evidence, including Planned Parenthood documents stating they have treated girls as young as 5 years old.
"If a 12-year-old shows up pregnant at a Planned Parenthood facility … there is good reason to believe a crime has been committed," Ackerman was quoted as saying in an article by Focus on the Family. "Once you suspect that illegal sexual activity has taken place with that minor, there is a duty to report it to child protective services, and if you don’t it’s a crime."
Two counts of the suit were thrown out by San Diego Superior Court Judge Kevin A. Enright, on the basis that the complaints did not, as a matter of law, state a cause of action. Because the ruling was based on the nature of the complaints, Ackerman was not permitted to present his evidence.
On November 7, Enright will preside over a hearing at which Ackerman will present his evidence against Planned Parenthood.
In the earlier dismissal, Enright ruled Planned Parenthood is not subject to relevant parts of the reporting act, because it is a "corporate entity not licensed to practice medicine."
Ackerman argues that Planned Parenthood provides abortions and dispenses drugs, such as RU-486, which is believed to have killed a California teenager who received the pills at a California Planned Parenthood facility. Additionally, he has testimony from former Planned Parenthood employee Megan Allen, who has alleged her employer allowed unlicensed individuals to participate in abortions and did not follow safety procedures.
Ackerman believes that if the previous ruling stands, youth sports leagues, churches, schools, and other similar organizations will no longer be required to report sexual abuse cases for the reason that they are "not licensed to practice medicine."
Despite the fact that all 50 states have laws requiring reporting of sexual abuse of minors, a national report by Life Dynamics, a Texas-based pro-life organization, showed that in 91% of the 813 calls they made to Planned Parenthood affiliates nationwide, the organization’s representatives said they would help the caller (who posed as a 13-year-old impregnated by her 22-yr-old boyfriend) conceal the information from parents and authorities.
Ackerman is also representing a California woman whose abortion perforated her uterus and bowel. The suit contends the facility’s owner and operator did not provide adequate follow-up care.