by Steven Ertelt
February 5, 2008
Overland Park, KS (LifeNews.com) — A local judge has set a hearing date for a Kansas Planned Parenthood accused of doing illegal late-term abortions and then falsifying medical records. Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri will face a preliminary hearing on April 7 and 8 on the 107 criminal charges.
District Court Judge Stephen Tatum set the dates and will order a jury trial if he finds probable cause that Planned Parenthood is guilty of the violations.
Johnson County District Attorney Phill Kline brought the charges. During a hearing last month, he also accused the Planned Parenthood of altering medical documents before turning them over to authorities in an earlier investigation.
Kline made the allegation during a court hearing when he called for the disqualification of two Planned Parenthood attorneys.
Kline wants the Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri lawyers Pedro Irigonegaray and Robert Eye dismissed as witnesses in the case he’s filed against the abortion center.
However, Judge Tatum denied his motion.
After the hearing, Irigonegaray told the Associated Press that Planned Parenthood "denies any wrongdoing" in the case as to the allegations that it altered medical records.
"We were very disturbed by Mr. Klines efforts to put on the record information thats not only erroneous but without any basis in fact," he said.
Kline’s allegations about the medical records came after Shawnee County District Judge Richard Anderson testified during the hearing. He is the judge who originally allowed Kline to obtain the records in 2004 when he was attorney general.
Kline filed charges against Planned Parenthood at that time but his replacement, now-disgraced Attorney General Paul Morrison, eventually cleared the abortion business in connection with the charges.
After taking the district attorney job from Morrison, Kline re-filed the charges.
According to AP, Judge Anderson testified that the records he received from Planned Parenthood in 2006 did not match the original ones he allowed Kline to obtain in 2004.
Instead, the records are those that Planned Parenthood gave Morrison that prompted him to drop the charges and Kline suspects the abortion business altered them to make it appear as if they had complied with state law.
Anderson indicated Morrison should never have dropped the charges because he was looking at falsified documents. He also said Morrison knew the documents were wrong yet he dropped the charges anyway.
Judge Anderson also testified that Morrison then filed a motion to have all of the documents transferred back to Planned Parenthood.
After the hearing, Mary Kay Culp told LifeNews.com that Morrison "gravely misused his office both to help Planned Parenthood avoid prosecution, as well as to hide all his court maneuverings on their behalf."
"The judge wasn’t asked and thus didn’t say if he suspected Morrison’s work to help get Planned Parenthood’s records back was based on Morrison knowing the records had problems, but it certainly begs the question," Culp added.