by Steven Ertelt
February 18, 2008
Lincoln, NE (LifeNews.com) — Two Nebraska women who saw their court orders misplaced for jail time in relation to abortion protests are resigned they will have to serve out the remainder of the prison terms. Sharon McKee and Melissa Abbink were initially sentenced to eight and five months in prison for protests in 1999.
The two were arrested twice for violating a local ordinance prohibiting picking in residential areas.
In a strange and rare development, the papers for processing their prison terms and instructing the women on when to turn themselves in were never processed.
The paperwork eventually showed up — eight years later — and the pro-life women were sent to jail in December to begin serving their terms.
Attorneys for the two have appealed the case to the State Board of Pardons and Lincoln Mayor Chris Beutler, asking for a pardon or commutation.
Despite hundreds of emails from pro-life people on their behalf, Beutler said he appreciated the women’s situation but couldn’t issue a pardon.
"For society to function, the lawful consequence of unlawful civil disobedience cannot be ignored,” he wrote their lawyer, Omaha attorney Martin Cannon, according to a Midlands News Service report.
The women are now resigned that they will have to serve out their jail terms. Abbink is slated to be released in May while McKee will be released in June.