An Alabama mother was charged with manslaughter Wednesday for allegedly starting a fight that led to her unborn baby’s death.
The alleged fight between Marshae Jones, 27, who was five months pregnant, and Ebony Jemison, 23, occurred in December 2018 in Pleasant Grove, Alabama, according to 7 News.
This week, a Jefferson County grand jury indicted Jones on manslaughter charges in the death of her unborn baby girl, and police arrested her Wednesday, according to the report.
Police said Jones initiated the fight with Jemison and then continued to fight her without regarding the potential harm to her unborn baby girl. At five months, her unborn daughter was nearly fully formed and quickly approaching viability.
Police said Jemison shot Jones in the stomach, and later was charged with manslaughter. However, a grand jury later dismissed the charge after police said Jemison was defending herself against Jones’ attack, Newsweek reports.
“The investigation showed that the only true victim in this was the unborn baby,’’ said Pleasant Grove police Lieutenant Danny Reid. “It was the mother of the child who initiated and continued the fight which resulted in the death of her own unborn baby.”
Here’s more from 7 News:
Reid said the fight was over the baby’s father and because Jones had started it, Jemison was forced to defend herself, which then led to the baby’s death.
“Let’s not lose sight that the unborn baby is the victim here,’’ Reid said.
“She had no choice in being brought unnecessarily into a fight where she was relying on her mother for protection.”
He said the baby’s mother should not have sought out “unnecessary physical altercations”.
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Police said they responded to the scene of the fight, but Jones was not there. According to police, they later found her at a convenience store where she drove after being shot.
AL.com reports police were not sure how much time had passed between the alleged fight and their finding Jones, but they took her to a local hospital. It is not clear if her unborn baby died before or after she arrived at the hospital.
Abortion advocacy groups expressed outrage at the charges, claiming it is proof that pro-life advocates want to oppress pregnant women.
“The state of Alabama has proven yet again that the moment a person becomes pregnant their sole responsibility is to produce a live, healthy baby and that it considers any action a pregnant person takes that might impede in that live birth to be a criminal act,’’ Yellowhammer Fund executive director Amanda Reyes said in a statement.
Reyes speculated that someday women also might be punished for having a drink while pregnant or failing to get adequate prenatal care.
Nothing could be further from the truth. The pro-life movement has no interest whatsoever in punishing or oppressing mothers. Many pro-life leaders are post-abortive women and men themselves who understood only too late the lies of the abortion industry. They came to the pro-life movement understanding that unborn babies deserve to be protected and their mothers deserve to know the truth that the abortion industry lies to and manipulates them for profit.
Many also recognize that women frequently are pressured or even forced to abort their unborn babies by abusive parents or partners.
What’s more, the pro-life movement historically has opposed punishing mothers for abortions. When abortions were illegal prior to Roe v. Wade, women were not prosecuted for having abortions and current abortion restrictions, such as the ban on partial-birth abortions, do not punish women either.
Pro-life advocates choose instead to offer compassion and healing to mothers and fathers whose children were aborted. Organizations like Rachel’s Vineyard and the Silent No More Awareness Campaign provide outlets for healing after an abortion, as do most pregnancy resource centers.