All charges dropped against Kansas Planned Parenthood: Former prosecutor Kline reacts
TOPEKA, Kansas, August 20, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – In a move that pro-life leaders have slammed as a clear case of “corruption,” officials have dropped what remained of 107 charges that former District Attorney of Johnson County Phill Kline filed against Planned Parenthood five years ago, snuffing out the last possibility of examining the charges in court.
District Attorney Steve Howe last week ended his predecessor’s extraordinary effort, which began in 2007 as an investigation of child rape, to bring Comprehensive Health of Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri (CHPP) to justice for allegedly performing illegal post-viability abortions. They were also charged with manufacturing evidence to cover up failure to report child sexual abuse.
Several of Kline’s original 107 charges, including all 23 felonies, were thrown out last year when it was claimed that administration officials with then-governor Kathleen Sebelius had shredded the documents needed to compare Kline’s records with Planned Parenthood’s later submissions. The destruction was said to have taken place in 2005, two years after Kline began uncovering abortionists’ alleged criminal activity.
Howe dismissed the remaining 32 misdemeanor counts on Friday.
Planned Parenthood Federation of America president Cecile Richards celebrated the end of the only government case ever brought against the abortion giant in America. “The message is clear. You cannot use public office to warp the law to advance an ideological agenda aimed at intimidating women and the health care providers they rely on,” said Richards.
In the accompanying statement, the district attorney said his office consulted unnamed medical experts who agreed with Planned Parenthood’s methods of determining gestational age, and that it was “reasonably probable” that an unborn child would die if born at 24 weeks, and thus should be considered non-viable.
“The remaining disputes between experts in the medical field” over CHPP’s methods, said Howe, “amount to a reasonable medical debate which the U.S. Supreme Court has declared unacceptable grounds for criminal prosecution.” Howe also said that the remaining handful of charges were nullified for having passed the statute of limitations.
In a statement this weekend, Kline said Howe’s statement “misses the point and indicated he doesn’t understand the case.”
Not only did Howe improperly define “viability,” said Kline, “but more importantly he completely ignores the allegation that Planned Parenthood lied about the gestational age of the fetus.”
Kline cited testimony from eyewitnesses and experts, including that of famous neonatologist Dr. T. Murphy Goodwin, that asserted CHPP had systematically aborted unborn children well past viability.
“It is not surprising the District Attorney does not understand the charges as, to my knowledge, his office did not contact any of these witnesses, obtain any of the records relating to Dr. Tiller’s clinic, never acted to preserve the testimony of Dr. Goodwin nor tried to contact anyone involved in the initial investigation,” he said. Kline also said that, contrary to Howe’s claim, the statute of limitations would not have applied to the charges mentioned.
The attorney also noted that several judges reviewed the case when Planned Parenthood tried to retrieve the evidence from Kline’s possession, and all had ruled it likely to find criminal activity on the part of abortionists - “Yet now, none of these charges will ever reach open court.”
Kline’s attorneys in June said in a detailed court document that corruption has penetrated the case since its beginning, with abortionists collaborating with members of Kansas’ legal establishment to muffle the evidence that came to light amid the investigations.
The document, a motion for the recusal of two judges from the case, ultimately precipitated the voluntary recusal of five of the judges.
“Despite this protracted whitewash, the fact remains that Planned Parenthood is now on the defensive around the nation due to their failure to report child sexual molestation, alleged financial fraud and failure to comply with reasonable abortion restrictions –- and these facts were first investigated and revealed in Kansas,” said Kline.
“The truth in Kansas is clear for those who want to see it – the destruction of documents, deceptive legal opinions and acts of political cowardice cannot erase that truth.”
Kline is currently fighting to keep his law license against ethics allegations brought against the attorney over his investigation into Planned Parenthood. Earlier this year, Kline said opponents faulted him, among other things, for his “conflict of interest” in being personally pro-life while probing the abortion business.