State Health Department to Probe Abortion Center in Video

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Feb 3, 2011   |   4:26PM   |   Trenton, NJ

The New Jersey state health department will investigate a shady abortion business a Planned Parenthood official mentioned in an investigative video showing staff at Perth Amboy Planned Parenthood aiding sex traffickers.

In the video that has captured national attention, the pair of alleged sex traffickers visit Planned Parenthood Central New Jersey’s abortion center in Perth Amboy and clinic manager Amy Woodruff, an LPN who has since been fired, warns the pimp and his prostitute to have their trafficked underage girls lie about their age to avoid mandatory reporting laws.

“Even if they lie, just say, ‘Oh he’s the same age as me, 15,’…it’s just that mainly 14 and under we have to, doesn’t matter if their partner’s the same age, younger, whatever, 14 and under we have to report,” Woodruff says. “Like on the paperwork there’s going to be a point that asks, uh, like are you sexually active, stuff like that … if they’re under a certain age… – you know, me and my other counselor, like for the most part we want as little information as possible – cause we don’t want to be involved…”

Woodruff also coaches the alleged sex traffickers on where to get an abortion that won’t be met with as much scrutiny, referring them to the New Jersey-based abortion business named Metropolitan Medical Associates, where she says “They won’t need ID then. Their protocols aren’t as strict as ours and they don’t get audited the same way we do.”

That comment, according to the Star-Ledger newspaper, has prompted state health officials to investigate whether underage girls at the Metropolitan Medical Associates are obtaining abortions without disclosing the age of their sexual partner.

Department of Health and Senior Services spokeswoman Donna Leusner told the newspaper that Commissioner Poonam Alaigh was “concerned” that Planned Parenthood was potentially referring young prostitutes to MMA.

Leusner said the health department’s probe of Metropolitan Medical Associates will include “an examination of patient medical records, interviews with staff and observations of the facility to ensure that it is complying with all regulations.”

Meanwhile, Attorney Frank Capece, speaking on behalf of the MMA abortion business, told the Star-Ledger he wouldn’t comment.

“We don’t comment on allegations by a former employee of Planned Parenthood,” he said. “We continue to be in full compliance and cooperation with the Department of Health regulations and are subject to ongoing review of policies and procedures by the state.”

In December 2009, Metropolitan Medical Associates, based in Englewood, New Jersey, settled a $1.9 million lawsuit out of court filed by a woman who was comatose for one month following a botched abortion she received there.

Newark resident Rasheedah Dinkins had an abortion in January 2007 at the Metropolitan Medical Associates abortion business that went horribly wrong.

Dinkins, who was 22 at the time of the settlement, became severely ill following the abortion and was transferred to Newark Beth Israel Medical Center where she needed blood transfusions and had her uterus removed. She also suffered a stroke due to the serious blood loss and had one of her lungs collapse.

“I was laying in my bed and I got the cold shakes,” Dinkins told AP in March 2007 about her ordeal. “My body kept going numb. After that, I don’t remember anything.”

“I think it’s horrible what I had to go through,” she said at the time.