George Tiller’s Illegal Abortion Hearing Focuses on Sexual Abuse, Resumes Jan
by Steven Ertelt
November 20, 2008
Wichita, KS (LifeNews.com) — The four days of hearings into the allegedly illegal late-term abortions George Tiller did have been completed and they are scheduled to continue in January. The final portion of the hearing focus on whether Tiller did an abortion on a 10-year-old girl and failed to report statutory rape to authorities.
Staff members for former Attorney General Phill Kline told a Topeka judge in 2006 that Tiller did the abortion and then failed to contact law enforcement as required by law.
The suspicions led Kline’s office to believe other cases of sexual abuse may not have been reported from Tiller’s abortion business and Kline pursued abortion records to determine if that was the case.
The records prompted Kline’s office, and subsequent attorneys general, to file charges against Tiller alleging he violated a state law requiring an independent physician to sign off on any late-term abortions.
Tiller’s lawyers told the Sedgwick County District Court this week that those 19 charges should be dismissed and that the evidence Kline gathered was improperly obtained even though a judge signed off on it.
Ironically, the case of the 10-year-old girl became a centerpiece of Tiller lawyer Dan Monnat’s case to dismiss the charges.
Monnat produced a letter contending the girl came from another state with her mother and had a local county attorney’s permission to get a late-term abortion at Tiller’s center since he is one of the few to do abortions so late in pregnancy.
Monnat produced another document contending Tiller reportedly told the Kansas Child Protective Services of the abortion, but investigator Tom Williams said that information is unclear.
Meanwhile, former Assistant Attorney General Steve Maxwell testified in court about his role in investigating Tiller during his tenure with Kline.
Operation Rescue spokesperson Cheryl Sullenger, who has been present during the entire hearing, told LifeNews.com much of the hearing has been a distraction from the charges at hand.
"None of what we have heard so far has changed the fact that the Attorney General’s office found evidence that Tiller had committed 19 counts of illegal late-term abortions. The merits of those charges are not even a subject of these hearings, and deserve their day in court," Sullenger told LifeNews.com.
The hearing has been continued until January 6, 7, and 8, 2009.
At that time testimony is expected from former Attorney General Paul Morrison. Former Attorney General Phill Kline is also expected to complete his testimony that was interrupted due to scheduling conflicts.
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