Now that the Biden administration is allowing for the distribution of the abortion pill by mail and through retail pharmacies, more women and teenage girls are likely to be coerced or forced into abortions they don’t want.
Studies show that 64% of women who have undergone abortions felt pressured to do so. That pressure can come from parents, boyfriends, employers, and friends. In some cases, women have been forced to abort or were tricked into taking the abortion pill. Sexual assault victims are often forced to abort by their abusers.
Caught in the act
In April of 2022, Jeffery Smith was sentenced to 20 years in prison — five years of initial confinement followed by 15 years of extended supervision — as part of a plea agreement after he was convicted of attempted first-degree intentional homicide of an unborn child.
In January 2018, a woman who was 21 weeks pregnant with Smith’s baby called the police to tell them that she thought Smith may have spiked her water bottle while she was in the bathroom. She had seen residue in the bottle upon her return and knew that he had wanted her to have an abortion. She had refused to do so. A series of text messages proved that he didn’t want her to have the baby and, when tested, the contents of the water bottle were found to include the abortion pill.
A search of Smith’s home discovered both mifepristone and misoprostol — the two drugs that make up the abortion pill regimen.
Forced abortion with help from a pharmacy technician
A Florida man was sentenced to nearly 14 years in prison for slipping an abortion drug to his pregnant fianceé. John Welden was a med student at the time and told Remee Jo Lee he wanted her to abort their baby. When she refused, he was able to procure a package of Cytotec — the drug misoprostol, meant to treat stomach ulcers. Misoprostol was approved off-label to be used with mifepristone to cause an abortion.
While mifepristone blocks the naturally occurring pregnancy hormone progesterone, thereby depriving the baby of nutrients, misoprostol causes contractions that expel the baby. Welden was able to scratch off the identifying marks on the pill and with the help of a pharmacy technician, replaced the Cytotec label with an Amoxicillin label. He told Lee that her prenatal visit to his father’s medical practice to confirm the pregnancy had revealed she had a mild infection and that she needed an antibiotic. He instructed her to take three a day until the pills were gone.
A few hours later, the baby died and Lee was experiencing heavy bleeding. Expert witness testimony allowed Welden to receive the full 13 years and eight months in prison that was recommended.
Death via the internet
Jin Mimae was arrested in February 2021 for tricking his pregnant girlfriend into taking mifepristone. Upon his arrest, he told police, “I didn’t want to marry her,” adding, “Because of the current economic conditions, I did not want to raise a child.”
Police say that Mimae ordered mifepristone online the same day that his girlfriend had a positive pregnancy test. Mimae told his girlfriend, who was just 18 years old at the time, that the pills were to treat a sexually transmitted disease.
After taking the pills, she began to feel unwell and reported to the police that she thought he may have drugged her with pills meant to induce an abortion. Police found mifepristone in her blood and urine samples, and ultimately, she lost the baby.
Covering up his crime
In 2021, an Omaha North High School coach and security guard was accused by a former student of sexually assaulting her beginning at 15 years old. Ronald L. Powell was accused of assaulting her for three years and impregnating her at least once. The woman, age 21 when she filed an affidavit against him, said he coerced her into sex and raped her on the high school campus and in hotel rooms.
In April 2017, she became pregnant and said Powell took her to Planned Parenthood where she was given the abortion pill against her will.
Attempted abortion regret
In 2007, Wisconsin man Manishkumar Patel was charged with attempted first-degree international homicide after he attempted to trick his girlfriend into drinking a beverage he had laced with RU-486 — mifepristone. He was sentenced to 22 years in prison after living as a fugitive for a decade.
The woman did not consume the drink after noticing him stirring it and then seeing powder floating in it. She sent the drink to be tested and it was found to have mifepristone in it. A search of Patel’s home uncovered an envelope containing the drug. The woman miscarried the baby two weeks later.
Patel returned to the U.S. in 2017, ready to accept his fate and with regret for his actions, saying he was worried the baby would have the same medical condition as the couple’s born son, but adding, “This did not excuse what I did.”
Late-term abortion by pill
The abortion pill is only FDA-approved for use up to 10 weeks of pregnancy. However, following the change to the FDA’s REMS health and safety requirements allowing for permanent distribution of the abortion pill by mail (and the abortion industry’s new “no-test” protocol which relies on the woman’s own best estimate for gestational age), it became easier for the abortion pill to be taken after 10 weeks, which increases the risks to women.
A woman named Aba wrote on Twitter in 2022, “My child’s father poisoned me and her for months in hopes of her death all while acting like the ideal boyfriend. Switched out my prenatals, physically inserted abortion pills in my body and from what I believe drugged my food as well.”
After his multiple attempts to force an abortion, Aba eventually went into labor at just 26 weeks and her baby died the same day. A few days earlier, Aba discovered that two pills, later identified to be misoprostol, had been administered vaginally by her boyfriend without her knowledge.
Covering up an affair
A married senior civil servant in the UK was found guilty in May 2022 of attempting to administer mifepristone to his pregnant mistress without her knowledge. Darren Burke, a former Home Office deputy director for the emergency services mobile communications programme, was sentenced to 45 months in prison.
It was revealed that he wanted to prevent his wife and their child from learning about his five-year-long affair, but his mistress refused to have an abortion. Though Burke claimed he had flushed the crushed-up pills down the sink after she said she wouldn’t abort, during the trial it was revealed that he put them in her orange juice. She noticed a white power on the empty glass and called police.
The woman miscarried the baby weeks after the attempted forced abortion.
Not wanting to be a ‘jerk’
A man named Mason Herring and his wife were attempting to work on their relationship following his affair. But when she learned she was pregnant with their third child, his actual plans to leave her were derailed.
Fearing he would be looked at as a “jerk” for leaving his pregnant wife, Herring slipped abortion drugs into her drinks. He first brought her a glass of water, insisting that she needed to stay hydrated, but it made her violently ill, sending her to the hospital. She became suspicious of him and started collecting the drinks he would bring her.
Using surveillance cameras, she eventually caught Herring on video putting powder into a glass of water for her. In the trash, she discovered a prescription for Cyrux, a medication that contains misoprostol. She called police and Herring was arrested for assaulting a pregnant person and assault-force induction to have an abortion.
In a 2018 study in the journal Contraception, researchers were able to order misoprostol without a prescription from 16 different websites. Some websites describe how to obtain the drug illegally, including Women on Waves, which advised readers: “To obtain one [of] these medicines, one could for example say that your grandmother has rheumatoid arthritis so severely that she is visiting and she forgot her medicines and is in pain, and that you do not have money to pay for a doctor to get the prescriptions for the tablets or that the doctor is on a holliday [sic].”
The Biden administration has now made it far easier for such heinous acts to be carried out by allowing the abortion pill to be prescribed via telehealth appointments, shipped through the mail, and picked up at retail pharmacies.
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