Prison Officials in Kansas Take Raped Inmate to Planned Parenthood for Abortion
by Steven Ertelt
October 5, 2009
Topeka, KS (LifeNews.com) — Prison officials in Kansas are coming under fire from a state pro-life group after an expose’ showing how they took a raped inmate to Planned Parenthood for an abortion. The woman, housed at the Topeka Correctional Facility, became pregnant after engaged in a sexual arrangement with a prison staffer.
According to an investigative piece in the Topeka Capital Journal, 30-year old Tracy Keith was raped in prison by a prison instructor, Ted Gallardo, in October 2007.
She was eventually coerced into an abortion that she says still haunts her.
When she discovered she was pregnant, Keiths reaction was to have the child but was told she was ineligible for an open adoption by a social worker working with the YWCA Battered Womens Task Force.
Eventually, prison staff took her to the Planned Parenthood center in Overland Park, outside Kansas City, that has been accused by state officials of doing illegal abortions.
Keith claimed to the newspaper that there were hints that if she ended her pregnancy, the other inmates in a contraband racket Gallardo was running would not be prosecuted.
"Kansas corrections officials deny the prison applied abortion pressure on Keith, but it was a state vehicle driven by a corrections employee that ferried her to Johnson Countys Planned Parenthood for an abortion on December 19, 2007," Kansans for Life legislative director Kathy Ostrowski explained to LifeNews.com.
Gallardo was eventually arrested by Topeka police but spent only 4 days in jail and was sentenced to two years probation.
"Gallardo was desperate to destroy evidence of his crime," Ostrowski said about the incident. "He illegally smuggled morning-after pills inside the prison to Keith and had an inmate stomp on Keith’s stomach in an effort to induce a spontaneous miscarriage."
"The story of Tracy Keith is heart-breaking. Lonely in prison, prohibited visits with her young son by her ex-husband and worrying about an empty bank account, she was an easy target for a calculating rapist, and inmate peer pressure to keep silent," Ostrowski explained.
"Keith apparently now suffers from post-abortion trauma and unrelenting, vivid memories," she said.
The KFL official said her group is asking state legislators to strengthen protection for women from sexual abuse inside prison confines, ensure jail time for law-breaking state employees and review policies and issue guidelines for pregnant inmates, including adoption access.
"It has been accepted for too long that pregnant women facing tough challenges –poverty, battery, substance abuse, disabilities, and prison should welcome abortions," Ostrowski said. "However, abortion is an act of desperation producing no positive health benefits, while consistently linked with increased suicide, substance abuse and long-term depression."
"This prison scandal also shows how abortifacient pills are employed by angry men (and predators) who do not want women to give birth," she added.
‘Men buy the most morning after pills in the countries where they are available without prescription. If these pills weren’t available over the counter, girls and women couldn’t be forced or tricked into taking them," she said.
Related web site:
Kansans for Life – https://www.KFL.org
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