Mom Sentenced to Prison for Buying At-Home Abortion Kit That Sent Daughter to Hospital

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 8, 2014   |   10:22AM   |   Washington, DC

A Pennsylvania mother is headed to prison after she was convicted of purchasing an at-home abortion kit for her daughter that, when used, ultimately she took the teenage girl to the hospital.

Two weeks after the abortion, her daughter had to be rushed to the hospital for heavy bleeding.

Jennifer Whalen has been charged with illegally obtaining the dangerous abortion drug to give to her daughter to kill her own grandchild. According to local news reports, the mother from Washingtonville was charged in Montour County Court that she helped her teen daughter abort her unborn child using illegally obtained drugs from overseas.

misoprostolWhalen was charged by state police at Milton with a felony count of medical consultation and judgment and misdemeanor charges of unlawful acts – not licensed as a pharmacist, endangering the welfare of a child and simple assault. After appearing before Magisterial District Judge Marvin K. Schrawder, she remained free on $25,000 unsecured bail and will face court arraignment in March.

News reports indicate Whalen  has been found guilty of breaking state law and has been sentenced to 18 months in prison.

Pennsylvania State law says that all abortions must be administered by physicians, and Whalen — who works as a nursing home aide — is not considered a physician. Whalen argued that her daughter did not have health insurance to cover a hospital abortion and that the nearest clinic was 74 miles away in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Montour County Court of Common Pleas sentenced Whalen to prison, as well as a $1,000 fine and 40 hours of community service. According to the report in Reuters, the sentence could have carried a fine of seven years in prison and a $15,000 fine.

Whalen said she purchased the kit because she couldn’t find a local abortion clinic and didn’t want to travel out of state.

Two weeks after administering misoprostol and mifepristone, Whalen rushed her daughter to the Geisinger Medical Center when she began bleeding and thought something was ‘really wrong’. Medical records show that Whalen’s daughter was treated for an ‘incomplete abortion and a urinary tract infection’ on February 6, 2012.

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The trip to the hospital alerted authorities to the DIY abortion, but it wasn’t until two years later that Whalen was formally charged. The District Attorney explained the delayed charges saying the case ‘was unusual and investigators had to research the drugs involved and other elements of the situation’.

This isn’t the first time a mother has tried to push her daughter into an abortion. Last year, a Pennsylvania woman who reportedly assaulted her pregnant teenage daughter and kicked her out of the house for refusing to get an abortion saw charges against her be dropped. The mother in the case went as far as telling her daughter she wanted her and her baby dead and threatened to kill both.