Planned Parenthood Quits Defending Secret Abortion on Raped Teen

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Apr 27, 2011   |   6:36PM   |   Cincinnati, OH

A lawsuit in which Planned Parenthood was recently found to have violated an Ohio informed consent law has been “resolved and dismissed,” according to the Alliance Defense Fund allied attorney who filed the suit.

ADF-allied attorney Brian Hurley represents the parents of a girl who, at age 14, was brought to a Planned Parenthood clinic for an abortion by the 22-year-old soccer coach who impregnated her.

The health and safety of young girls is far more important than Planned Parenthood’s desire to make money on an abortion,” said ADF Senior Counsel Steven H. Aden. “This lawsuit was yet another clear demonstration of Planned Parenthood’s ongoing effort to put its profit margin ahead of the true needs of young women. If they truly cared about the girls who enter their doors, they would not be ignoring Ohio law and allowing statutory rape to occur so they can make money killing a baby. They also wouldn’t be trying so desperately to keep all of their records secret.”

In December 2010, the Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas determined that Planned Parenthood of Southwest Ohio Region violated state law when it failed to meet with the 14-year-old girl at least 24 hours prior to giving her the abortion. Following this, a psychologist found that the abortion had caused her to suffer significant psychological harm, including post-traumatic stress disorder. The case was “resolved and dismissed” shortly thereafter.

Hurley, one of more than 2,000 attorneys in the ADF alliance, filed the suit Roe v. Planned Parenthood of Southwest Ohio Region on behalf of the girl’s parents when they discovered that Planned Parenthood allowed her to undergo the abortion at the behest of her soccer coach.

Neither Planned Parenthood nor the soccer coach notified the parents of the abortion or the sexual relationship.  Planned Parenthood also did not notify civil authorities, which is required in cases of statutory rape. The soccer coach was convicted of sexual battery and served three years in prison.

Dana Cody of the Life Legal Defense Fund, commented to on the resoluion of the lawsuit:

Resolution of the case comes just months after a major blow to Planned Parenthood’s (PP) defense on the applicability of Ohio’s informed consent statute. Judge Jody Luebbers ruled that the doctor for PP of Southwest Ohio breached her legal duty by not having an “informed consent” meeting with Jane Roe 24 hours in advance of her abortion, and by failing to obtain written informed consent from Jane and at least one of her parents since Jane was a minor at the time.

In addition to the lack of informed consent, the plaintiffs sought compensatory and punitive damages against PP for failure to comply with their statutory duty to inform Jane Roe’s parents of her intended abortion. Jane, at age 14, had been impregnated by her 21-year-old soccer coach, also the man who brought her in for the abortion. Instead of notifying Jane’s parents, as required by Ohio law, PP phoned the sexual predator. PP’s failure to notify Roe’s parents and to gain informed consent resulted in Jane not only undergoing the abortion, but also in the continued cover-up of the sexual abuse, demonstrating a disturbing trend in PP clinics: disregard for the health and wellbeing of women and children.

Resolution of this case must have been an act of desperation on the part of Planned Parenthood. They went, in a matter of months, from litigating every inch of their defense to a sudden willingness to resolve the matter. I would speculate that had PP gone to trial there would have been too much exposure of how they do business. After all, they are currently experiencing public outrage over their apparent willingness to cover up the sexual exploitation of children. What more might they have to hide?

LLDF commends Brian Hurley for his tremendous work on Roe. His diligence and perseverance continues in another Ohio case, Fairbanks v. Planned Parenthood, case no. A0901484, Hamilton County, Ohio, where Mr. Hurley is representing Denise Fairbanks. The claims include PP’s failure to report statutory rape by Ms. Fairbanks’ father when at age 16 she was taken to PP for an abortion. The complaint states that although she informed PP staff of the abuse, they did not report to local law enforcement, and for more than a year she continued to suffer abuse that PP could have prevented by simply complying with the law.