Attorney Wants Bail Lowered in Case of Woman Who Forced Daughter’s Abortion

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Mar 23, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Attorney Wants Bail Lowered in Case of Woman Who Forced Daughter’s Abortion

by Steven Ertelt Editor
March 23
, 2009

Ft. Lauderdale, FL ( — The attorney for a woman who was arrested and charged with forcing her teenage daughter to have an abortion wants her bail lowered. Tonuya Rainey, 38, allegedly obtained drugs from an abortion center to make her daughter have an abortion and then threw the body of the baby in the trash.

The incident occurred earlier this month and Rainey appeared in court on Friday, where she had her bail raised from $14,000 to almost $200,000.

Now her public defender Howard Finkelstein has filed a motion to appeal the decision to set the bail so high she will be unable to leave jail until her case is fully prosecuted.

"We will be filing a writ today," Finkelstein told the Sun-Sentinel newspaper. "The gist of the writ is the judge reacted emotionally, for personal or political reasons. We are ready to go on it."

"When it comes to issues of abortion and children dying, emotions are passionate and strong," Finkelstein told the newspaper. "And judges cannot act like everyday people on those emotions."

Finkelstein is reacting to the comments the judge made during the bail hearing and he filed the appeal with Florida’s Fourth District Court of Appeal in West Palm Beach.

"I believe that what has allegedly occurred is tantamount to murder," Broward County Judge John Hurley said. "So I’m going to set a bond in that regard and consistent with my feelings."

Hurley said this was a special case that merited the higher amount.

"I’ve handled murder cases in here. I have handled sex cases. I’ve handled everything. This is it, this is the pinnacle," Hurley said. "I have never been so disturbed."

Finkelstein told the newspaper that Hurley’s decision came because of his "right-wing" views on abortion.

"I think this was more about the politics of abortion, which the Supreme Court has already decided on, than on anything else," Finkelstein said. "This woman was charged with a specific crime, not murder. It’s not up to the judge to decide she should be charged with murder."

Rainey faces felony charges including termination of pregnancy, improper disposal of human remains, unlicensed practice of health care and child abuse but does not face any murder charges in connection with the death of the unborn child.

WFOR reported that she reportedly did not want her 16-year-old daughter to give birth, so Rainey obtained abortion pills and gave them to her daughter. An assistant state attorney said in a police report that the daughter "said to her mother she wanted to keep the baby."

While spending time at a local nightclub, her daughter gave birth in the bathroom of their home.

A police report, the television station noted, indicated the baby was alive at the time of the birth and was "moving his hands and breathing."

WFOR indicates Rainey told police she "placed the infant in a bag and dumped the infant in the garbage." Although sanitation workers have picked up the garbage, the baby boy’s body has not been located.

Rainey is a surgical technician at Broward General Medical Center.

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