New information is coming to light showing the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office is apparently trying to cover up the fact that a Planned Parenthood clinic killed a patient in a botched abortion.
Yesterday, the pro-life group Operation Rescue released a copy of the autopsy showing that 24-year old Tonya Reaves died from three major complications during a botched second-trimester abortion suffered at a Chicago area Planned Parenthood abortion clinic on July 20, 2012. Operation Rescue, which obtained the autopsy results, says it indicates that Reaves’ injuries were survivable if she had received proper emergency care in a timely manner.
However, the pro-life group indicates today that it was not provided the complete autopsy report — indicating six pages were omitted that place the blame squarely on Planned Parenthood’s shoulders. The copy the pro-life group received from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office was missing the six important pages that further detailed Reaves fatal abortion injuries and noted that Planned Parenthood was where her abortion took place.
The sanitized copy sent to Operation Rescue contained no mention of Planned Parenthood. The omission was discovered when attorneys for the Thomas More Society, a pro-life legal group that also had filed an open records request for the report, compared notes with Operation Rescue.
“It appears we received an incomplete copy that did not document the fact that Planned Parenthood is responsible for Reaves death,” said Troy Newman, President of Operation Rescue and Pro-Life Nation. “This only further affirms our concerns that officials in Chicago are trying to cover up for Planned Parenthood in this case.”
According to Newman, one missing page titled “First Call Sheet”, there appears to be redacted information on the first line under “Medical History” where the circumstances surrounding Reaves death are explained. After the redaction, there is the following notation: “1100. Planned Parenthood. Suction D&E. Post Op bleed.”
The missing pages note that Reaves was transported to Northwestern Memorial Hospital via a Chicago Fire Department ambulance at 4:30 p.m., five and a half hours after her botched second trimester abortion left her hemorrhaging. However, there is no record that an emergency 911 call was placed by Planned Parenthood.
Also included is an anatomical diagram indicating a large abdominal incision made during an emergency hysterectomy performed by a hospital surgeon in a vain effort to save Reaves’ life as well as marks on her chest consistent with the application of defibrillator paddles. The records show that despite these efforts, Reaves could not be resuscitated.
“This case has become a political hot potato. Now we see efforts to illegally conceal records that, by law, should have been produced under our Freedom of Information Request. It was completely wrong for the Medical Examiner’s office to withhold those pages from the public. We can only wonder what they are hiding,” said Newman. “We appreciate the Thomas More Society providing us with the full autopsy report, which we have made available to the public, as it should be.”
See the full autopsy at https://operationrescue.org/pdfs/Reaves%20Full%20Autopsy%20Report.pdf
Newman said the autopsy reveals the following:
- She was a healthy woman who was approximately 16 weeks pregnant at the time of her abortion, well into the second trimester.
- She suffered from an incomplete abortion. The Medical Examiner discovered pieces of placenta still attached to the inside of her womb even after a second abortion done by the hospital to remove fetal remains left by Planned Parenthood.
- She suffered a 3/16 inch uterine perforation near forcep impression marks. D&E abortions involve dismembering the baby in the womb and removing the pieces with forceps.
- She suffered an “extensive” perforation of her broad uterine ligament with a possible severing of her left uterine artery as a result of her abortion. This accounted for the internal bleeding that was discovered only too late by the hospital trauma team.
- There were 1-1.5 liters of blood and clots inside her abdominal cavity. The human body holds roughly five liters of blood. Reaves bled about 30 percent of her total volume of blood into her abdomen, and that does not account for the amount of blood lost through what was likely substantial vaginal bleeding due to the retained fetal remains.
- In a vain attempt to save her life, the hospital trauma team performed an emergency hysterectomy on Reaves.
Some news report have indicated that a contributing factor in Reaves’ death was injuries received from being pushed down a flight of stairs by her one-year old son’s father. However, the autopsy indicated, “There is no evidence of significant recent external injury.” This puts the responsibility for Reaves’ death solely on Planned Parenthood.
Newman is also concerned that Planned Parenthood is engaging in false advertising about the abortions it does at the Chicago clinic where Tonya died.
“Reaves’ abortion took place at the Loop Health Center Planned Parenthood, located at 18 S. Michigan Avenue in Chicago. Planned Parenthood’s website indicates that surgical abortions were not supposed to be available at that location, which leads to questions about whether the office was properly equipped for risky second trimester abortions,” he said.
Operation Rescue plans to file a complaint with the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation against abortionist Carolyn Hoke, who is believed to have been responsible for Reaves’ abortion. Hoke serves as the Medical Director for Planned Parenthood. One week after Reaves’ family sued Planned Parenthood of Illinois for killing Reaves, it agreed to pay the state $367,000 to settle a case against Hoke involving fraudulent over-billing of Medicaid.
In that case, abortion practitioner Caroline Hoke was accused of over-billing Medicaid an estimated $430,380 for mostly undocumented services. Hoke was the state’s fourth highest billing Medicaid physician, asking the taxpayers to fork over $3.9 million to her from 2009-2011 as she served as the Medical Director for Planned Parenthood of Illinois.
Although news reports indicate Reaves’ family has filed suit, officials with Operation Rescue and the Thomas More Society, a pro-life legal group, can find no actual evidence one has been filed. The family reportedly sued Planned Parenthood and Northwestern Memorial Hospital after Reaves received a botched second trimester abortion at a Chicago Planned Parenthood office on July 20, 2012.
Initially, Steve Miller of the CBS news affiliate WBBM released a report showing documents released in the botched abortion death of Tonya Reaves that alarmingly showed Planned Parenthood delayed summoning emergency care for the dying woman for five and a half hours after the abortion failed.
Later John Jansen of the Pro-Life Action League, obtained documents verifying that Planned Parenthood’s Loop Health Center in Chicago did not call 911 on the day 24-year old Tonya Reaves died after having an abortion at the facility.
“Documents obtained via the Freedom of Information Act show [PDF] that only one call to 911 was made on Friday, July 20 from the building located at 18 S. Michigan, which houses Planned Parenthood and several other tenants,” Jansen said. “It’s unclear which tenant in the building placed that call, made at 12:46 p.m., but it was concerning an instance of child abuse, and thus could not possibly have been related to Tonya Reaves.”
“Planned Parenthood’s unfathomable negligence in the death of Tonya Reaves raises numerous questions that demand answers,” Jansen added. “Why didn’t Planned Parenthood call 911 immediately once Tonya Reaves started experiencing complications following her abortion?”
“Did Planned Parenthood call a private ambulance company instead of calling 911? If so, why? It was a Chicago Fire Department ambulance that ultimately transported Tonya Reaves to Northwestern Memorial Hospital — five and a half hours after her abortion. If Planned Parenthood didn’t call 911, who notified the Fire Department and told them to send an ambulance?” Jansen asked. “Does Planned Parenthood’s Loop Health Center have a medical emergency policy? If so, was it followed in the case of Tonya Reaves?”
“Most abortion facilities in the state of Illinois are subject to inspections by the Department of Public Health. But due to a loophole in the state’s complicated abortion facility regulatory scheme, all Planned Parenthood abortion clinics in Illinois are unlicensed and not subject to state inspection,’” he continued. “As a result, there is a lot we don’t know about Illinois’ Planned Parenthood facilities.”
Jansen concluded: “But we do know that 24-year old Tonya Reaves had an abortion at Planned Parenthood’s Loop Health Center and died 12 hours later — and Planned Parenthood needs to be held accountable for her death.”
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At 11:00 a.m. on Friday, Reaves received a second-trimester dilation and evacuation (D&E) abortion at Planned Parenthood, located at 18 S. Michigan Ave. in Chicago. Following the abortion, Reaves began bleeding heavily and it continued at Planned Parenthood for five and a half hours before a Fire Department ambulance finally took her to Northwestern Memorial Hospital at 4:30 p.m., according to Miller.
Then, once the young woman arrived at the hospital, the reports make it appear emergency personnel had to start from scratch to figure out the extent of Reaves injuries.
“Then at 5:30 p.m., doctors performed an ultrasound, and another dilation and evacuation procedure – basically, another abortion – this time at Northwestern,” Miller reports. “But after that, there were then more problems, and pain. That warranted a new ultrasound, and a perforation was discovered. At 10:12 p.m., Reaves was taken back to surgery – and “an uncontrollable bleed was discovered,” documents say.”