Federal Appeals Court Won’t Decide Terri Schiavo Case Before Judge Does

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Mar 21, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Federal Appeals Court Won’t Decide Terri Schiavo Case Before Judge Does Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
March 21, 2005

Atlanta, GA (LifeNews.com) — A federal appeals court issued a ruling Monday indicating it would not make a decision on the Terri Schiavo case without first letting a federal district court judge hold hearings.

In their desperate attempt to prevent Terri’s starvation Friday afternoon, attorneys for Bob and Mary Schindler filed a number of motions, including one with the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Before Congress passed a bill granting them federal standing in their case, Schindler attorneys went ahead and filed a motion for a habeas corpus review of their lawsuit. The federal district court in Tampa denied the request and the Schindlers appealed that decision to the 11th Circuit.

However, the 11th Circuit ruled Monday that the federal district court must first consider the case before it will issue a final determination on the matter.

Now that Congress has approved legislation allowing them to go to federal courts, U.S. District Judge James Whittemore announced a hearing, which will take place at 3 p.m. EST.

The most immediate concern for the Schindlers and Terri’s family is to reconnect her feeding tube and begin providing the disabled woman with food and water. This is the third time her tube has been removed.

Judge Whittemore could issue a stay authorizing Terri to receive food and water while the case progresses.

The Schindlers’ lawsuit states that Florida courts abrogated Terri’s 1st Amendment religious liberties by failing to consider that, as a Catholic, Terri likely would oppose her estranged husband’s bid to euthanize her. The Schindlers also contend that Terri’s due process rights were violated because she has never had her own attorney during the eight-year long battle.

Should Whittemore decide against taking the case or rule against the Schindlers, they would likely appeal that decision to the 11th Circuit.

Related web sites:
Terri’s parents – https://www.terrisfight.org