by Steven Ertelt
April 12, 2005
Topeka, KS (LifeNews.com) — Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline continues to defend his agency’s investigation into two abortion facilities that performed abortions on children who were apparently victims of statutory rape. Kline has been fighting the abortion businesses in court to obtain records concerning the abortions.
Abortion advocates have taken on a national campaign to criticized Kline and Indiana Attorney General Steve Carter, who is conducting a similar investigation of abortion on minors there.
However, Kline, in a letter to the The Kansan newspaper, defends his actions.
"Child rape is a serious crime, and when a 10-year-old is pregnant, she has been raped under Kansas law," he wrote. "As the state’s chief law enforcement official, I have a duty to investigate in order to protect Kansas children."
While abortion advocates claim Kline’s request for records would violate the privacy rights of the girls involve, he says his investigation was secret until media outlets and the abortion businesses ballooned the story.
"This inquiry has been ongoing for over a year and, until two abortion clinics sought to make public this criminal investigation, was conducted in private so as to protect the identities of innocent individuals and the integrity of the investigation," Kline explained.
The attorney general noted that he was the primary author of a "rape shield" bill that passed in the Kansas legislature during his time there that prevents disclosure of rape victim identities.
"I have a strong concern for privacy, but sex predators must be stopped from preying upon children in secret," he said.
Kline also wrote in The Kansan letter that it is the abortion facilities who have violated patient privacy.
"Conversely, one clinic was cited by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment for violations that potentially allowed unauthorized access to patient records," Kline wrote. "Another clinic specializing in late term abortion, while criticizing this investigation as an invasion of privacy, has indicated its own use of patient information for political fund-raising."
Last month, the Kansas Supreme Court decided it will not seal documents related to the investigation.
A Shawnee County district judge previously issued a gag order in October preventing the information from being made public and the Kansas Supreme Court overturned that decision.
Kline worries that abortion businesses are informing those girls who had abortions and that the information could tip off criminals who were responsible for the statutory rapes.