Fire of Unknown Cause Burns Facility of Late-Term Abortion Practitioner Carhart
by Steven Ertelt
January 16, 2009
Bellevue, NE (LifeNews.com) — A fire has burned part of the abortion center run by infamous late-term abortion practitioner LeRoy Carhart. The Nebraska-based center is one of the few in the nation to do late-term abortions and Carhart’s name became famous when the Supreme Court ruled for him against a partial-birth abortion ban.
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives arrived on the scene following the report of the blaze and they say it heavily damaged the building.
Officials have not yet said what caused the blaze in the basement of Carhart’s abortion center, although it has not been declared an arson.
A spokesman for Bellevue Fire told Action 3 News, "Not at this time," when asked whether he thought the fire was suspicious. A neighbor reported the fire at 6:29 a.m local time when she saw smoke rising from the building and fire officials contained the blaze 15 minutes later.
The fire reportedly began in the basement of the facility, where Carhart says he knows of nothing that could have ignited the blaze. The basement apparently kept cabinets with medical files and other papers.
Carhart says he hopes to have his abortion business back up and running against next week once investigators allow him control of the building following their probe.
He indicated he hoped to have his facility open by Wednesday of this coming week and that he would make other arrangements to do abortions on his patients if he couldn’t meet that deadline.
Carhart told the Associated Press that no one had threatened him or the abortion business recently and that he didn’t know anyone who would have been behind the fire.
In 2000, the Supreme Court upheld a challenge Carhart filed against a Nebraska ban on partial-birth abortions. The majority of the high court sided with him in saying that the ban required a health exception even though abortions are damaging to the health of the mother.
The Supreme Court came back in 2006 and ruled against Carhart and other abortion advocates who wanted to strike down a Congressional ban on the grisly abortion procedure. The court said the health exemption was not needed and pointed out how women experience medical and mental health problems following abortions.
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