Ohio underage girls sought out-of-state abortions after being sexually assaulted, affidavits say

The rape of a 10-year-old girl from Ohio who allegedly traveled to Indiana for an abortion isn’t the only case of a minor who had to cross state lines following a State law prohibits virtually all forms of the procedure, health providers say.

In affidavits filed this month included in a lawsuit challenging the Ohio law — which went into effect after the U.S. Supreme Court in June overturned the landmark Roe v. Wade that guaranteed a constitutional right to abortion — two separate providers said each had a case in which a minor was sexually assaulted and had to travel out of state to terminate her pregnancy.

Aeran Trick, the director of operations at the Women’s Med Center in Dayton, said he was contacted in July about a 16-year-old from southwestern Ohio who had been sexually assaulted, allegedly by a member of his family. family.

The girl couldn’t legally access an abortion in Ohio “due to the presence of fetal heart tones,” Trick said, so she traveled to Indianapolis, where the center operates a sister clinic. Ohio law enforcement was aware of the case, Trick added, and had to travel to Indianapolis to retrieve tissue for testing as part of a sexual assault investigation.

“I fear that the Ohio ban and the need to travel ever-increasing distances to obtain abortion care will not only cause unimaginable harm to these young victims, but may also impede the ability of forces order to investigate and prosecute these cases in the future,” Trick said in the affidavit.

In another case, a minor who was sexually assaulted was taken to Michigan by her mother for an abortion, according to an affidavit from Dr. Adarsh ​​Krishen, the chief medical officer for Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio, who is a plaintiff in the pursuit.

“This patient suffered immense trauma from the assault itself and then suffered additional trauma during a forensic interview alongside a physical examination to gather evidence for the ongoing police investigation,” said Krishen in the affidavit. “This trauma was further exacerbated by having to wait over 3 weeks for her appointment. At every step of this process, she felt the complete denial of bodily autonomy and safety, something that all people, especially children, should have unequivocal at all times.

The affidavits were first reported by The Ohio Capital Journal. NBC News could not immediately verify the accounts by Trick and Krishen, and their offices did not respond to a request for additional details.

The initial report of the 10-year-old girl who had to have an abortion outside Ohio due to the state ban has drawn attention – and scrutiny from Republicans such as the attorney general of the Dave Yost state – when a doctor, Caitlin Bernard, told The Indianapolis Star about the case.

President Joe Biden pointed to it as an example of how the end of the constitutional right to abortion has imposed undue hardship in states with so-called trigger laws, or abortion bans that do not were to come into effect only if Roe was rescinded.

“Ten years – 10 years – raped, six weeks pregnant, already traumatized, was forced to go to another state,” Biden said during a speech at the White House in July, when he signed a decree protecting access to abortion.

An investigation led to the indictment of a 27-year-old suspect on two counts of rape. A trial is scheduled for next month in Franklin County.

Yost’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the affidavits.

The Ohio Supreme Court this month dismissed a case filed in June by abortion providers who argued that Ohio’s constitution provides broad protections for individual liberties that would protect access to abortion. ‘abortion.

But another lawsuit filed by the ACLU of Ohio on behalf of the state’s other abortion providers remains before a lower court judge, who temporarily blocked the nationwide abortion ban. Status until October 12. A hearing on the matter is scheduled for October 7. .

In an earlier statement regarding the original lawsuit, Yost disagreed that the right to abortion is protected by state law. He is one of many defendants in the ongoing trial.

“Races don’t start at the finish line, and prosecutions don’t start at the last court,” he said. “In addition to filing the wrong action in the wrong court, they are also wrong on Ohio law. Abortion is not in the Ohio Constitution.

Following Roe’s overthrow, 13 states implemented laws restricting most abortions. Ohio’s law banning abortions, if upheld, would ban the procedure with only limited exceptions for the life and health of the mother.

Medical providers said in their affidavits they had been overwhelmed by the ban and had been forced to cancel hundreds of appointments this summer as patients faced tough choices about what to do TO DO.

“Many patients broke down in tears in our office,” said Sharon Liner, medical director of Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio, in the affidavit. “Many patients whom we could not reach by phone and who came to our health center hoping to have their appointment were extremely upset; some threatened to harm themselves because they were so distraught.


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