A crime story out of India this week serves as a reminder of how often pregnant women and unborn babies are subjected to cruel abuses.
The Times of India reports a judge in the Tamil Nadu district of India sentenced a man to death Tuesday for murdering his wife and unborn baby in 2015.
M. Suresh, 36, of Gandhi Nagar Colony, recently was convicted of murder and other crimes. Authorities said he abused his wife repeatedly, beating her and burning her with cigarettes.
On July 21, 2015, when his wife was about six months pregnant, authorities said Suresh accused her of having an affair. According to the report, he then punched her in the stomach and on other parts of her body, causing her to bleed.
The young woman and her unborn baby died in the hospital the next day, the report states.
The wife appears to have been very young. According to the report, they married when she was 14 years old, and she was pregnant with their third child when she was murdered.
Many women experience abuse during pregnancy and their unborn babies are often second, unrecognized victims. According to the March of Dimes, one in six abused women reports the first abuse occurred while she was pregnant.
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Several studies also have linked domestic violence to abortion. In these cases, some women were forced or pressured by partners into having abortions, while others believed having an abortion would help them escape abuse. A 2011 study in “Obstetrician and Gynaecologist” found that almost 40 percent of the women seeking abortions had a history of physical abuse and relationship issues.
Another study found that as many as 64 percent of post-abortive women say they felt pressured to have an abortion.
LifeNews has reported numerous crime stories involving pregnant women who allegedly were threatened, assaulted or killed after they refused to abort their unborn babies.