FORT WAYNE, IN, April 23, 2014 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Police in Indiana have filed two counts of child molestation against a 21-year-old man, despite the fact that an abortionist did not report his 13-year-old victim's abortion to state authorities in the manner required by law.
The charges are the culmination of a pro-life campaign that drew attention to Dr. Ulrich George Klopfer's habitual refusal to comply with a state law designed to catch child predators, making his reporting violation a national story.
Authorities in the city of Fort Wayne say Ronte Lequan Latham met the 13-year-old girl in the summer of 2012, while he was working as at a local park facility, Weisser Park Center. The two had sexual relations that winter.
Klopfer performed her abortion in February 2012. Under Indiana law, no one under the age of 14 is capable of consenting to sex, so all abortions performed on girls that young must be reported to both Child Protective Services and the Indiana State Department of Health within three days. But he did not report the procedure until July 25.
Allen County Right to Life Executive Director Cathie Humbarger and sidewalk counselor Evelyn Witte each filed complaints with Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller and the Indiana Medical Licensing Board over his inaction.
Unrepentant, Klopfer told Sofia Resnick of RH Reality Check that he encouraged girls under 14 to go to Illinois or Ohio – states that have no such reporting requirements.
The advice caused his physician backup, Dr. Geoffrey Cly, to sever his relationship and close the Fort Wayne office. “Your advice to cross state lines for abortions may help child abuse to continue and a perpetrator or abuser to walk free,” Dr. Cly wrote, adding that his “advice blatantly disregards patients' well-being.”
The letter precipitated the first abortion facility closure of 2014.
“This sad situation magnifies why abortion reporting requirements are on the books,” Humbarger said. “By reporting a pregnancy on a young girl within a timely fashion, police and child protective services can promptly begin an investigation and get the victim out of a harmful situation before more abuse occurs.”
Officers with the Special Victims Unit raided Klopfer's Women's Pavilion abortion facility in South Bend, Indiana on March 20, photocopying records. He failed to report two other minor girls' abortions in time.
“It also appears that Dr. Klopfer failed to follow proper reporting requirements on girls under 14 at his Gary and South Bend abortion practices,” said Indiana Right to Life President and CEO Mike Fichter. “Like the complaint filed by Humbarger, our Right to Life affiliates in those counties also filed complaints with the state against Dr. Klopfer for not following the law. We call on the authorities to ensure justice is done for the victims of abuse in those locations as well.”
Klopfer still performs abortions in South Bend and Gary, but investigators say he does not have a secondary physician listed at either location. There are also allegations of improper record keeping, such as his habit of listing the date of every abortion at 88 weeks.
In 2010 and 2012, state inspectors found that Klopfer allowed the bodies of aborted babies to be stored in a refrigerator alongside medication the office would dispense to its patients. They also found unsigned consent forms, fire hazards, and a nitrous oxide tank that had expired in December 1989.
The epidemic of underreporting is not limited to Klopfer. Between 58 and 75 percent of abortions performed on Indiana girls under the age of 14 were not reported in accordance with the law, according to an investigation by Amanda Gray of the South Bend Tribune.
Pro-life advocates have long said that predators use abortion to cover up sexual molestation, and abortionists turn a blind eye to the practice in exchange for the business.
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“Allowing abortion in the case of rape or incest further victimizes the victim and an innocent child dies in the process,” Monica Kelsey, who was conceived in rape and founded the pro-life group Living Exceptions, told LifeSiteNews. “We have to have stricter laws regarding rape and incest and we need to hold these abortion doctors accountable when they disregard the law like Dr. Klopfer has done three times in Indiana now.”