Terri Schiavo’s Feeding Tube in Place After Emergency Court Order

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Feb 23, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Terri Schiavo’s Feeding Tube in Place After Emergency Court Order Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
February 23, 2005

Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Though a Florida appeals court issued a mandate finalizing its decision against the parents of Terri Schiavo, a local judge issued an emergency stay until a hearing could be held to determine if another stay should be put in place while Bob and Mary Schindler take their case to the Supreme Court.

The Florida 2nd District Court of Appeal rejected an argument by the Schindlers that starving Terri to death would violate her religious liberties as a Catholic whose church condemns euthanasia. The Schindlers will appeal the ruling to the Supreme Court and Circuit Court Judge George Greer will determine today whether to issue another stay.

Yesterday, Judge Greer agreed to an emergency motion put forward by Schindler attorney David Gibbs preventing Terri’s estranged husband Michael from removing her feeding tube until the Wednesday afternoon hearing.

"The family is profoundly grateful," Gibbs said after Greer issued the emergency order. "They believed God answered their prayers. Their daughter is alive another day."

Euthanasia advocate George Felos, Michael’s lead attorney, told the Associated Press after Greer’s order that his client would remove Terri’s feeding tube "as soon as he’s legally authorized."

However, if Greer refuses to extend the stay while the Schindlers head again to the Supreme Court, Gibbs told CNN News that he will ask a state appeals court for an additional stay so the case can be taken to its conclusion.

"This is like a death penalty case," Gibbs said. "We have to go everywhere that we possibly can to protect the life of Terri Schiavo, and we intend to do so."

Gibbs told CNN he will argue today that there is no harm in delaying the removal of the feeding tube while the legal battles continue.

The court rulings came on the 15th anniversary of Terri’s collapse.

Some doctors say that she collapsed as a result of a potassium imbalance, but Terri’s family points to a bone scan taken not long afterwards showing possible head trauma, indicating that Terri could have been a victim of physical abuse. Local authorities have refused to investigate further, saying it has been too long since the bone scan was conducted.