Linda Gibbons still in jail seven weeks after her last arrest outside abortion center
TORONTO, October 21, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) – Fifty days after her September 2 arrest outside the Morgentaler abortion facility on Hillsdale Avenue in Toronto’s upscale Leaside neighborhood, pro-life prisoner of conscience Linda Gibbons remains in jail.
And following her silent and brief Tuesday morning appearance in College Park Court, via video from the Vanier Center for Women, the 67-year-old pro-life grandmother will remain behind bars yet another week, as her case was put off until next week.
A representative for Gibbons’s lawyer, Daniel Santoro, student-at-law Janelle Belton told the court that Crown Counsel Daniel Brandes told her Monday he “would like to have a little more time” to consider “additional evidence.” The Crown counsel present concurred, noting that Gibbons’s case presented “very complicated issues.”
Gibbons was arrested after walking back and forth outside the Morgentaler abortion center for about two hours, holding pamphlets, a replica of a ten-week-old child in utero and her now-familiar sign with a picture of a crying baby and the words “Why Mom? When I have so much love to give.”
She remained silent until she was placed under arrest and handcuffed, at which point Gibbons said to the sheriff: “You arrest me while allowing the murder of babies? You have blood on your hands.”
She was charged with obstructing a peace order and disobeying a permanent injunction that prohibits certain activities – such as “impeding, interfering with, blocking and obstructing” women entering the facility – within 500 feet of the entrance of the Morgentaler abortion center, effectively banning life-saving activities such as sidewalk counseling within this “bubble zone.”
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Following Gibbons’ last two arrests outside the Hillsdale Avenue location – in August 2014 and March 2015 – the crown dropped all charges, although Gibbons spent three months and seven weeks in jail, respectively, before it did so.
The charges were dropped because in both instances the crown’s case was identical to an earlier conviction that Ontario Superior Court Justice Gary Trotter overturned in July 2014 on appeal.
Crown counsel Brandes told LifeSiteNews in an earlier interview that the Crown would make “every effort to expedite” Gibbons’ case, but that it “has an obligation to review disclosures before making any determination.”
Gibbons has now spent ten years, eight months and three weeks in jail for her peaceful witness to mothers and their unborn children immediately threatened by the violence of abortion.
Much of this is “dead time” – time spent before a trial or hearing commences – because Gibbons refuses to accept bail conditions requiring her to stay away from the abortion centers. She also refuses to speak in court, in solidarity with the victims of abortion.
Gibbons’s next scheduled court appearance is October 27.