Abortion Practitioners in California Lose Licenses Over Problems

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 22, 2011   |   11:39AM   |   Sacramento, CA

Two abortion practitioners in California have lost their medical licenses — with one facing revocation and another facing suspension for problems ranging from alcohol abuse to criminal felony convictions that made them untrustworthy as physicians.

Jesse James Joplin has worked for the Planned Parenthood Mar Monte abortion business for 27 years, but new documents from the California Medical Board this month indicate Joplin had his licensed revoked after repeatedly violating probations imposed by the board. The medical board issued an “interim suspension order” July 25 making it so his days as a “supervising physician” at Planned Parenthood-Mar Monte in San Jose and now his license have been taken away permanently.

The state medical board, months ago, cracked down on Joplin over a series of alcohol-related convictions over the last few years — starting with a California Highway Patrol officer finding marijuana and alcohol in his vehicle during a 2007 traffic stop for speeding. Joplin pleaded no contest, according to the newspaper, on charges of “reckless driving involving alcohol, drugs, or both.”

Joplin was again arrested after his erratic driving prompted motorists to call authorities in September 2009 and a March 2010 incident resulted in a misdemeanor conviction of drunken driving and he reportedly chose to go to jail rather than perform community service.

The medical board reportedly took its initial actions against Joplin on April 22 but also issued a stay of its decision and placed Joplin on probation for seven years. The decision at that time made it so, if Joplin violated any of the conditions of his probationary status, his medical license would be suspended. Those conditions included complete abstention from drugs and alcohol, random urine testing four times monthly, a psychiatric evaluation, monitoring from an independent physician, and relinquishing his role as a supervising doctor.

“His reported attempts at recovery have been unsuccessful, nevertheless Planned Parenthood continued to keep him employed doing surgical abortions even though his alcohol abuse was evident,” says Operation Rescue president Troy Newman, who has been following the controversy surrounding Joplin.

Joplin has been in serious trouble before with the state medical board related to a failed abortion. Medical records showed Joplin was found to be guilty of “gross negligence and incompetence” related to an April 1990 incident in which an abortion he performed resulted in the death of 26-year-old patient “Y.G.” Joplin after he failed to act on the woman’s high blood pressure. Joplin was placed on five years’ probation for the incident.

A second abortion-related problem had Joplin underestimate the age of an unborn child by seven weeks and resulted in him attempting an abortion on a viable baby outside of California’s legal abortion limits. Joplin was unable to complete the abortion in this case and the woman was transferred to a nearby hospital where an ultrasound confirmed the failed estimate of the baby’s age and the woman gave birth to a stillborn baby.

Joplin’s license was permanently revoked on September 13.

Meanwhile, the state medical board suspended the medical license of Feliciano Rios, of Chula Vista, California for 60 days in an order issued by the Board that went into effect on September 20, Newman said.

Rios’ discipline is the result of criminal felony convictions for grand theft, Medi-Cal fraud, and perjury. Rios was placed on probation after those convictions and restricted from owning firearms. After records showed that Rios failed to transfer ownership of his weapons, police searched his abortion clinic and found three handguns, two of which were semi-automatic, locked in a filing cabinet fully loaded with ammunition. Possession of the firearms constituted a violation of his criminal probation.

In addition to the suspension, Rios is ordered to take an ethics course and not engage in the solo practice of medicine. Another physician will be appointed to monitor Rios once his suspension is served.

“It’s hard to believe that, after all his crimes, Rios would not merit harsher punishment,” said Newman. “There’s no doubt that this man will re-offend. It’s unfortunate that the Board did not take stronger measures to protect the public.

“But for now, one very dangerous abortionist is permanently out of the business while another won’t be killing children for at least 60 days,” Newman continued. “That is great news for women and their pre-born babies. More than ever Boards are beginning to take action against offending abortionists. The days of governmental agencies protecting them at any cost are coming to an end in this nation. This is one more message to abortionists everywhere that they are not above the law.”