Pro-lifers arrested for giving moms roses at abortion center during COVID-19
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BATON ROUGE, Louisiana, May 1, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – On Thursday two pro-lifers were arrested for offering women roses at the Delta Clinic abortion facility, an action that led two mothers to turn away from abortion and another eight to at least leave the abortuary.
Pro-life demonstrators, including well-known Baton Rouge activist Richard Mahoney, arrived at the facility at 7:30 am. Mahoney was accompanied by Red Rose Rescuers Lauren Handy and Patrice Woodword. Their intention was to speak to all of the women arriving for their abortions who lined up in the parking lot waiting their turn to enter the abortion facility. Seventy pro-lifers soon assembled outside of the clinic, some quietly praying while others held signs.
At about 9:40 a.m. the Delta Clinic abortionist, Nigerian-born Nsikan St. Martin arrived. When the clinic security guard was distracted escorting her into the facility, Will Goodman and Tony Puckett, both donning personal protective equipment, quietly slipped into the abortion facility’s side door, which was unlocked. They quickly gained access to the abortion center’s waiting room. Four women were already inside the abortion procedure rooms waiting for the abortionist to administer the first dosage of the RU-486 chemical abortion.
Will Goodman and Tony Puckett were soon confronted by two abortion staff members, one of whom asked, “What are you doing here?”
Goodman explained: “We are offering roses to anyone in the clinic,” and proceeded to offer roses to each of the women. They seemed puzzled and took the roses, with one of them saying: “Well, this is very nice of you.”
The other staff member, however, read the card attached to the roses that addressed words of hope and encouragement to abortion-minded women urging them to choose life with phone numbers of local pregnancy help groups. The clinic worker became furious, pulled all but one rose out of Goodman’s hands, threw them on the floor, and demanded that Goodman and Puckett leave the facility.
Goodman explained: “We can’t leave. We are here to help mothers choose life.” The staff member responded: “You cannot be in this building unless you are getting an abortion. Are you getting an abortion, sir?”
Goodman stated: “Of course not. We are here in peace to prevent the abortions and offer hope to the mothers.” The staff member grabbed Goodman’s shoulder, at which point Goodman dropped to the floor in a passive posture. Puckett, still holding his roses, knelt down on one knee.
The rescuers were confident that the women in the procedure rooms could hear the exchange between them and the facility staff. Soon one woman came out from the back hallway and, while Goodman was limp on the floor, she exited the building in tears. She did not obtain the abortion as the abortionist had not yet entered the building.
Eventually the security guard and abortionist St. Martin walked into the clinic’s waiting room and yelled at the rescuers saying that they needed to “Get out!”
While they were preoccupied with the rescuers, the parking lot remained “unguarded” by those affiliated with the abortion center. Rescuers Lauren Handy and Patrice Woodwood took the opportunity to enter the lot. They talked with the women who were still lined up waiting to get into the facility. Of the 15 women, seven accepted the roses offered to them. One woman actually asked Handy if she could have one of the roses. Lauren spoke to her for a few moments, told her that her own phone number was on the card attached to the rose, and encouraged the woman to call her. The woman left the line, walked back to her car and drove off.
Goodman offered his remaining rose to abortionist St. Martin but she refused to accept it. Instead, both she and the security guard proceeded to drag Goodman out of the facility. Baton Rouge police officers had already arrived with 10 police vehicles cluttering the parking lot. Several women were still standing in line waiting to get into the clinic. Four of them, apparently unnerved by the commotion caused by the presence of so many police officers, left the line, got in their cars and exited the parking lot.
Goodman was dragged outside the clinic and “deposited” on the pavement near the clinic’s front door. Then the security guard retrieved Puckett and escorted him out of the facility as well. At this point four other women exited the abortion center, and appeared very angry. Apparently, for reasons unknown, they had been turned out of the clinic and were denied whatever “service” they had hoped to obtain. Altogether 10 women left the abortion center during the time the Red Rose Rescue took place.
The police warned Goodman and Puckett they needed to leave the property or they would be arrested. Goodman explained: “We cannot do that, Officer. We are here to defend the helpless unborn scheduled to be put to death.”
One officer appeared sympathetic to the rescuers and stated: “I totally understand what you are doing and if I wasn’t wearing this uniform I’d tell you exactly what I think.” Goodman and Puckett expressed their resolve not to leave the property and thus, they were handcuffed and taken into custody. The police were concerned that the rescuers were not going to walk on their own to the waiting police vehicles and threatened them with resisting arrest if they practiced “passive resistance.” Goodman asked if the police squad cars could be driven up to them and if so, they would agree to get up and enter the cars. The officers complied with this request.
Goodman and Puckett were taken to the local police station, booked while remaining in the police cars, and released immediately with a charge of “Failure to Disperse.” They are scheduled to appear in court June 29.
It should be noted that only the security guard and the abortion center receptionist wore face masks. Abortionist St. Martin did not practice any so-called social distancing when she engaged the rescuers, wore no personal protective equipment, and did not observe the six-foot social distancing rule. Both Goodman and Puckett informed all abortion clinic staff that they intended to observe social distancing restrictions—but clinic staff chose not to comply. St. Martin also remarked to Goodman that for money she “would gladly abort any of his babies,” and told Puckett, “I would have aborted you.”
“If abortion clinic staff can enter a clinic to kill the unborn, and if an abortionist can enter to kill the unborn, all during a coronavirus pandemic, then certainly pro-lifers can also enter an abortion clinic to defend and possibly even save the unborn,” commented Dr. Monica Migliorino Miller of Citizens for a Pro-Life Society, who helped organize the Baton Rouge rescue and is a founding member of Red Rose Rescues.
“It is quite clear that at least two women did not kill their babies [Thursday], and possibly even more as a consequence of the Red Rose Rescue. No matter what, the Red Rose Rescuers performed a practical act of love for these mothers and their babies. Even in this time of crisis we still need to be there, to go into the dark holes of the poor as far as we can, and love all those who are unwanted.”