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Archive for Thursday, October 25, 2007

Tiller asks court to block grand jury

October 25, 2007

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— One of the nation's few late-term abortion providers is asking Kansas' highest court to block a grand jury investigation of him and his Wichita clinic that was initiated by anti-abortion groups.

Abortion opponents accuse Dr. George Tiller of violating a 1998 state law restricting late-term abortions, an allegation his attorneys repeatedly have said is unfounded. The grand jury is scheduled to convene Tuesday in Sedgwick County.

Lee Thompson, an attorney representing Tiller, said Wednesday that summoning the grand jury amounts to harassment. Anti-abortion groups forced the county to create the grand jury by collecting nearly 7,900 signatures on a petition, more than three times the number required.

Tiller's attorneys filed a petition Friday with the Kansas Supreme Court, asking it to prevent the grand jury from convening. The court has not scheduled a hearing.

"This is a proceeding brought for harassment and in bad faith by the petition gatherers," said Thompson, a former federal prosecutor. "You approach the level of vigilantism, and I think we see that happening in this instance."

Mary Kay Culp, executive director of Kansans for Life, said abortion opponents sought a grand jury because of Tiller's influence in state politics and because potential violations of the law have been ignored for years. Kansans for Life is the state's largest anti-abortion group and was heavily involved in the Sedgwick County petition drive.

"Nothing Dr. Tiller or any of his lawyers do surprises me - nothing," Culp said. "It makes you have to wonder just what it is they're so afraid of."

The legal dispute is unusual. Few states allow citizens to petition to empanel a grand jury, and Kansans haven't used the power much historically. Also, defendants typically don't challenge their prosecutions until after they have been convicted.

The grand jury Tiller wants to block would be the second one abortion foes have forced the county to create in 18 months to investigate the doctor. Last year, a grand jury reviewed the death of a Texas woman who had had an abortion at Tiller's clinic but issued no indictments.

Comments

Ragingbear 7 years, 3 months ago

Surprised that the anti-abortion terrorist haven't already made a thousand post where they rant and rave and use terms like "Tiller the Killer" without adding in any actual constructive thought. I guess they are hiding from the Moon God that is out tonight.

SettingTheRecordStraight 7 years, 3 months ago

The complete irony of your post, Raging, is that on one hand you deride a lack of "constructive thought" and on the other hand you refer to millions of pro-life Americans as "terrorists" and worshippers of a "Moon God."

Thanks for a good laugh.

Ragingbear 7 years, 3 months ago

Are we talking about the same people who think that doctors that perform abortions should be killed, women who have abortions imprisoned for life, and think that people who bomb abortion clinics are heroes? Sounds like terrorist to me.

Yes. American Terrorist worship the Moon God. While those with sanity worship the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

shockchalk 7 years, 3 months ago

Irony indeed........Ragingbore is the first one on the scene with a post that NO contructive thought whatsoever. He is consistent however.......none of his posts have any constructive thoughts.

I don't know any pro-life people that think abortion doctors should be killed and people who bomb clinics are heroes. Sounds more like the rabid pro-choice crowd that wants to murder babies in the 3rd trimester of pregnancy and furnish sixth-graders with birth control that their parents know nothing about. Yes American Terrorist worship themselves, their rights, their feelings, their entitilement, their bull-sh#t, but they have no problem taking all that away from an innocent baby. Where's the choice for them????

RAGE ON...................Ragingignoramous

Clickker 7 years, 3 months ago

Anyone's religious views notwithstanding, I would stake my house on the fact that anyone who is a parent or has actually seen a sonogram would not approve of the type of proceedure Tiller does. I think it would sicken them.

BigDog 7 years, 3 months ago

Are we talking about the same people who think that doctors that perform abortions should be killed, women who have abortions imprisoned for life, and think that people who bomb abortion clinics are heroes? Sounds like terrorist to me.


There are unlawful crackpots in various causes and those who commit crimes against these doctors should be prosecuted just like anyone else who commits the same crime against a pro-life individual because of their views.

It becomes real easy to bypass the cause because you can throw out a few crackpots and then paint everyone who is pro-life with this brush.

That makes about as much sense as me saying every environmentalist who is opposed to this coal fired energy plant supports the actions of eco-terrorists or support people like Ted Kaczynski (Unabomber).

I don't believe that and don't believe most pro-life individuals support these other kooks.

imastinker 7 years, 3 months ago

I for one am disgusted by people that harm others by shooting and threatening abortion clinics. I do not support killing in any method - because of vigilanteism, murder, death penalty, or abortion.

I think there's a lot of people like me. The folks here that try to make me look like I (or most pro-life people) support these killers are disgusting. You are using red herrings to confuse the real issue. Are you not able to debate with real facts?

staff04 7 years, 3 months ago

"One of quack Tiller's young victims, Michelle Armesto, a coerced high school girl in 2003, gave first-person, eye-witness testimony to a joint legislative investigating committee in Topeka on September 7, highlighting numerous crimes and violations of medical regulations against her and her viable baby. She also turned over her abortion record as evidence. This is public information. This enough, by itself, for a grand jury to indict Tiller on a dozen charges, probably more, and for the Kansas criminal justice system to put him and a Planned Parenthood abortionist quack, Shelly Sella, who worked in his abortion mill in 2003, away for many years. This evidence cannot be hidden, covered over, or discounted by any in our corrupted Kansas criminal justice system. Keep a good thought."


If this statement were in any way, shape, or form true, then Tiller and Sella would have been put away by AG Kline.

staff04 7 years, 3 months ago

I retract. Was that September 7, 2007? 2003?

a_flock_of_jayhawks 7 years, 3 months ago

"Nothing Dr. Tiller or any of his lawyers do surprises me - nothing," Culp said. "It makes you have to wonder just what it is they're so afraid of."

That's unbelievable, Mary Kay. Everyone in this country deserves a right to privacy and freedom, free from the harassment Culp is responsible for. When the abuse of the legal system occurs at this level, is of this nature and for this length of time, Tiller's lawyers and anyone else for that matter are right to call it harassment. Something the Grand Jury can consider and may. They surely are not using the law, they are abusing it.

a_flock_of_jayhawks 7 years, 3 months ago

RT's dreamin' again and he's even got a theme song to go with it.

Just wait 'til he wakes up and realizes it was only a dream.

a_flock_of_jayhawks 7 years, 3 months ago

Capt. Obvious says, "Murder? Rape? Incest? Robbery? Assault?"

Nope. Those are actually crimes. Looks like you're the goombah, Capt. So much for the obvious.

Is it too much to ask that a legal medical procedure be done safely and correctly? The anti-abortion groups actually make that position part of their argument. Of course, their true motivation behind that position is not genuine. Pick away at the legal procedures by suggesting that the ones that are performed are not safe, done legally or correctly while working to make the procedure itself illegal. Now that's what's obvious.

badger 7 years, 3 months ago

What they're doing is legal and part of the grand jury process. They're allowed to do it. So be it.

If Tiller's been breaking the law, he should be put out of business and into jail. Keeping abortion safe and legal is doubly difficult when people on the pro-choice side behave unethically. I have worked too hard to try to protect abortion rights to tolerate people who flout the law on it.

However, if he's cleared in this, I think that the petition, following so closely on the heels of another investigation which turned up no wrongdoing, should be sufficient fodder for a harassment charge, a defamation suit, and a wide application of restraining orders.

It's a travesty, using the grand jury petition process to push a political agenda. Fine, they got their petition, give them their investigation. But if this one turns up no evidence of wrongdoing I think that Kansans for Life and those who spearheaded the drive need to face some penalty for wasting the court's time and harassing Dr. Tiller.

storm 7 years, 3 months ago

can't we put a christian spin on abortion...it had to die for other people's sins...i mean this idea worked for the murder of jesus...his dad sent him to the planet earth to die for people he didn't know...just something to think about...

Katara 7 years, 3 months ago

Badger wrote: "It's a travesty, using the grand jury petition process to push a political agenda. Fine, they got their petition, give them their investigation. But if this one turns up no evidence of wrongdoing I think that Kansans for Life and those who spearheaded the drive need to face some penalty for wasting the court's time and harassing Dr. Tiller."

Exactly.

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