by Maria Vitale Gallagher
LifeNews.com Staff Writer
April 28, 2005
Orlando, FL (LifeNews.com) — Workers at a Florida abortion facility have come under fire for failing to assist a woman whose baby was born alive there.
The woman, Angele, who has asked that her last name not be used, is now considering filing a lawsuit against the facility. Angele, who was 22 weeks pregnant at the time of the incident, is being represented by Liberty Counsel, a nonprofit pro-life and religious liberty legal organization.
Angele told WorldNetDaily that she had chosen the EPOC Clinic of the Orlando Women’s Center in Orlando, Fla. because workers there had convinced her that her unborn baby would feel no pain during the abortion and because the “staff seemed caring."
Angele had chosen the “labor and delivery process" for her abortion as opposed to partial-birth abortion or dismemberment. She thought it would be less harmful for her unborn baby.
The woman, who is in her 30s, had asked what would happen if the baby were born alive.
“I wanted it to be as humane and painless as possible for my son," Angele told WorldNetDaily. “They told me they would guide a needle directly into his heart and it would put him to sleep, and he wouldn’t feel anything."
Following her initial visit to the abortion facility, she could feel the baby still moving within her. The next day she took pills meant to induce labor.
"I waited outside, cramping and crying, for the clinic to open. My contractions were close. I had been having them for hours. I knocked repeatedly at the door," Angele told WorldNetDaily.
After she obtained access to the abortion facility, she delivered her son.
"In one agonizing push, I felt and heard something come out. Then immediately another push. I was weak. I just held my head in my hands for a moment. Then I decided to stand up. I looked. There was my baby, the whitish cord and what I thought surely must be the placenta," Angele told WorldNetDaily.
Angele added, “I started sobbing and lay down (on) the floor. I stared and stared at my son. I was horrified that I had just had him in a commode."
Angele then screamed for help for her son, whom she called Rowan.
When an abortion facility employee finally arrived, she refused to call 911 for the baby, who was still moving. Angele ended up calling a friend, asking her to call an ambulance. But Rowan died before help arrived.
Angele wants an autopsy to be performed on Rowan’s body, but the local coroner has refused to do it.
"It’s important to my cause to prove that Rowan was alive in order to stop this from happening again," Angele told WorldNetDaily, adding that the results could be used as evidence.
Rowan’s body is now at a funeral home in cold storage.
The founder of the Orlando Women’s Center, James S. Pendergraft, is known for his late-term abortions. He was convicted of extortion in February of 2001 and served seven months in prison. While the conviction was later overturned, he admitted in federal court that he obstructed justice by supporting a business associate he knew was lying.
The Florida legislature is now considering measures to regulate abortion facilities in the state. Mathew Staver, president and general counsel of Liberty Counsel, told WorldNetDaily, “we’re going to be providing some of this information (about Rowan) to some legislators."
Staver added that Liberty Counsel’s ultimate goal is to “shut this clinic down."