Peter J. Smith

Witness: Phill Kline didn’t need/want adult patient names

Peter J. Smith
Peter J. Smith

Note: For more general background on this important case, click here.

TOPEKA, Kansas, February 28, 2011 ( – Steven Maxwell, Phill Kline’s chief criminal prosecutor during his years as attorney general and then district attorney, told a disciplinary hearing panel that it is “false” that Kline ever sought the names of adult women patients of George Tiller’s clinic in order to prosecute illegal late-term abortions.

Kline faces charges of unethical conduct for allegedly obtaining hotel records and matching them to state medical reports in an effort to identify Tiller’s patients, including adults.

Deputy Disciplinary Administrator Al Walczak on Friday had alleged to Maxwell that Kline would have needed the names, so that Kline could have Tiller’s former adult patients testify about illegal late-term abortions.

But Maxwell, a lieutenant colonel in the Air National Guard, told the disciplinary panel in response that Phill Kline’s investigation was always primarily focused on prosecuting child sex offenders, and so needed the children’s names. But, he said, Kline never needed nor sought the names of adult patients to prosecute the additional aspect of illegal late-term abortions, because all he needed was the medical evidence.

Maxwell also pointed out that Kline’s successor, AG Paul Morrison, had proved that medical files alone would have been sufficient to prosecute the late-term abortions. Morrison later brought his own charges against George Tiller over illegal late-term abortions, without having the names of the adult patients.

Walczak interrogated Maxwell at length about a spreadsheet report containing guest data on Tiller’s child and adult patients from the LaQuinta Inns in Wichita.

Maxwell said that Kline wanted to keep the investigation into child rape moving forward after the Kansas Supreme Court’s February 2005 intervention in the “Alpha Beta” case put a roadblock in their efforts to get the names of the potential child victims of sex abuse. Kline’s office had subpoenaed Planned Parenthood and Tiller’s medical records – but both clinics were fighting the release of that information.

He said the AG’s office learned LaQuinta Inns gave a medical discount to Tiller’s patients, after the death of one of Tiller’s patients. The woman was a mentally disabled 19-year-old, who had been raped and become pregnant – a fact Maxwell said further alarmed them about the danger to children.

Maxwell said Kline wanted to take a “shot in the dark” and thought if they could cross-reference the dates on the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) abortion reports with the dates list of guests at LaQuinta receiving Tiller’s medical discounts, they might get matches that would help them find the names of the children.

He said they expected they would find the names of adults, because children never register in a hotel under their names and would have travelling companions – potentially their rapists.

Walczak asserted that he and Kline must have known that they would also get the names of adult patients. Maxwell, however, responded that it was never their intention to do so. He said it is typical for law enforcement to get a lot of information they don’t need when conducting a drag-net operation.

“We separate the wheat from the chaff,” he said.

Walczak then asked about the spreadsheet compiled by Williams’s assistant, Jared Reed, that included information about Kansas and non-Kansas female patients over 16-years-old who underwent late-term abortions over 22 weeks.

Maxwell said Reed was a very conscientious employee known for doing a thorough job. He said it is possible that Williams, a veteran former FBI agent with 31 years experience who was “computer illiterate,” “didn’t know what a spreadsheet was” much less how to create one. He said Williams might not have been clear enough with Reed that he only wanted data on the children and potential adult escorts – a possibility that Williams himself acknowledged on the stand earlier in the week.

Maxwell also explained that Reed’s report on the adults never made it into the AG file. He added that Williams, who reported directly to him, never gave him any such document that included the names of adult patients. He said he only became aware of its existence as a result of the ethics investigation.

Furthermore, he said that if they wanted the names of adult women, they could have used the exemption in the federal HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) rules that allows prosecutors to obtain full medical files for an investigation.

“We could have done it. But it wasn’t considered by Mr. Williams or myself,” he said. “It wasn’t our desires.”

The effort, which he said was not unethical, ultimately did not pan out. “Police officers routinely waste their time going down these avenues,” he added.

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Lisa Bourne


Pressure mounts as Catholic Relief Services fails to act on VP in gay ‘marriage’

Lisa Bourne
By Lisa Bourne
Rick Estridge, Catholic Relief Services' Vice President of Overseas Finance, is in a same-sex "marriage," public records show. Twitter

BALTIMORE, MD, April 24, 2015 ( -- Nearly a week after news broke that a Catholic Relief Services vice president had contracted a homosexual “marriage” while also publicly promoting homosexuality on social media in conflict with Church teaching, the US Bishops international relief agency has taken no apparent steps to address the matter and is also not talking.

CRS Vice President of Overseas Finance Rick Estridge entered into a homosexual “marriage” in Maryland the same month in 2013 that he was promoted by CRS to vice president, public records show.

Despite repeated efforts at a response, CRS has not acknowledged LifeSiteNews’ inquiries during the week. And the agency told Thursday that no action had been taken beyond discussion of the situation and CRS would have no further comment.

"Nothing has changed,” CRS Senior Manager for Communications Tom said. “No further statement will be made."

LifeSiteNews first contacted CRS for a response prior to the April 20 release of the report and did not receive a reply, however Estridge’s Facebook and LinkeIn profiles were then removed just prior to the report’s release.

CRS also did not acknowledge LifeSiteNews’ follow-up inquiry later in the week.

“Having an executive who publicly celebrates a moral abomination shows the ineffectiveness of CRS' Catholic identity training,” Lepanto Institute President Michael Hichborn told LifeSiteNews. “How many others who hate Catholic moral teaching work at CRS?”

CRS did admit it was aware Estridge was in a “same-sex civil marriage” to Catholic News Agency (CNA) Monday afternoon, and confirmed he was VP of Overseas Finance and had been with CRS for 16 years.

“At this point we are in deliberations on this matter,” Price told CNA that day. also reported that according to its sources, it was a well-known fact at CRS headquarters in Baltimore that Estridge was in a homosexual “marriage.” 

“There is no way CRS didn't know one of its executives entered into a mock-marriage until we broke the story,” Hichborn said. “The implication is clear; CRS top brass had no problem with having an executive so deliberately flouting Catholic moral teaching.”

“The big question is,” Hichborn continued, “what other morally repugnant matters is CRS comfortable with?”

While the wait continues for the Bishops’ relief organization to address the matter, those behind the report and other critics of prior instances of CRS involvement in programs and groups that violate Church principles continue to call for a thorough and independent review of the agency programs and personnel.

“How long should it take to call an employee into your office, tell him that his behavior is incompatible with the mission of the organization, and ask for his resignation?” asked Population Research Institute President Steven Mosher. “About thirty minutes, I would say.”

“The Catholic identity of CRS is at stake,” Hichborn stated. “If CRS does nothing, then there is no way faithful Catholics can trust the integrity of CRS's programs or desire to make its Catholicity preeminent.” 

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Thousands of marriage activists gathered in D.C. June 19, 2014 for the 2nd March for Marriage. Dustin Siggins /
The Editors

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Watch the March for Marriage online—only at LifeSiteNews

The Editors

WASHINGTON, D.C., April 24, 2015 ( -- At noon on Saturday, the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) and dozens of cosponsors, coalition partners, and speakers will launch the third annual March for Marriage. Thousands of people are expected to take place in this important event to show the support real marriage has among the American people.

As the sole media sponsor of the March, LifeSiteNews is proud to exclusively livestream the March. Click here to see the rally at noon Eastern Time near the U.S. Capitol, and the March to the Supreme Court at 1:00 Eastern Time.

And don't forget to pray that God's Will is done on Tuesday, when the Supreme Court hears arguments about marriage!

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Hillary Clinton: ‘Religious beliefs’ against abortion ‘have to be changed’

Ben Johnson Ben Johnson Follow Ben
By Ben Johnson

NEW YORK CITY, April 24, 2015 ( – Speaking to an influential gathering in New York City on Thursday, Hillary Clinton declared that “religious beliefs” that condemn "reproductive rights," “have to be changed.”

“Yes, we've cut the maternal mortality rate in half, but far too many women are still denied critical access to reproductive health,” Hillary told the Women in the World Summit yesterday.

Liberal politicians use “reproductive health” as a blanket term that includes abortion. However, Hillary's reference echoes National Organization for Women (NOW) president Terry O’Neill's op-ed from last May that called abortion “an essential measure to prevent the heartbreak of infant mortality.”

The Democratic presidential hopeful added that governments should throw the power of state coercion behind the effort to redefine traditional religious dogmas.

“Rights have to exist in practice, not just on paper. Laws have to be backed up with resources, and political will,” she said. “Deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs, and structural biases have to be changed.”

The line received rousing applause at the feminist conference, hosted in Manhattan's Lincoln Center by Tina Brown.

She also cited religious-based objections to the HHS mandate, funding Planned Parenthood, and the homosexual and transgender agenda as obstacles that the government must defeat.

“America moves ahead when all women are guaranteed the right to make their own health care choices, not when those choices are taken away by an employer like Hobby Lobby,” she said. The Supreme Court ruled last year that closely held corporations had the right to opt out of the provision of ObamaCare requiring them to provide abortion-inducing drugs, contraceptives, and sterilization to employees with no co-pay – a mandate that violates the teachings of the Catholic Church and other Christian bodies.

Clinton lamented that “there are those who offer themselves as leaders...who would defund the country's leading provider of family planning,” Planned Parenthood, “and want to let health insurance companies once again charge women just because of our gender.”

“We move forward when gay and transgender women are embraced...not fired from good jobs because of who they love or who they are,” she added.

It is not the first time the former first lady had said that liberal social policies should displace religious views. In a December 2011 speech in Geneva, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said perhaps the “most challenging issue arises when people cite religious or cultural values as a reason to violate or not to protect the human rights of LGBT citizens.” These objections, she said, are “not unlike the justification offered for violent practices towards women like honor killings, widow burning, or female genital mutilation.”

While opinions on homosexuality are “still evolving,” in time “we came to learn that no [religious] practice or tradition trumps the human rights that belong to all of us.”

Her views, if outside the American political mainstream, have been supported by the United Nations. The UN Population Fund stated in its 2012 annual report that religious objections to abortion-inducing drugs had to be overcome. According to the UNFPA report, “‘duty-bearers’ (governments and others)” have a responsibility to assure that all forms of contraception – including sterilization and abortion-inducing ‘emergency contraception’ – are viewed as acceptable – “But if they are not acceptable for cultural, religious or other reasons, they will not be used.”

Two years later, the United Nations' Committee on the Rights of the Child instructed the Vatican last February that the Catholic Church should amend canon law “relating to abortion with a view to identifying circumstances under which access to abortion services may be permitted.”

At Thursday's speech, Hillary called the legal, state-enforced implementation of feminist politics “the great unfinished business of the 21st century,” which must be accomplished “not just for women but for everyone — and not just in far away countries but right here in the United States.”

“These are not just women's fights. These have to be America's fights and the world's fights,” she said. “There's still much to be done in our own country, much more to be done around the world, but I'm confident and optimistic that if we get to work, we will get it done together.”

American critics called Clinton's suggestion that a nation founded upon freedom of religion begin using state force to change religious practices unprecedented.

“Never before have we seen a presidential candidate be this bold about directly confronting the Catholic Church's teachings on abortion,” said Bill Donohue of the Catholic League.

“In one sense, this shows just how extreme the pro-abortion caucus actually is,” Ed Morrissey writes at “Running for president on the basis of promising to use the power of government to change 'deep seated cultural codes [and] religious beliefs' might be the most honest progressive slogan in history.”

He hoped that, now that she had called for governments to change religious doctrines, “voters will now see the real Hillary Clinton, the one who dismisses their faith just the same as Obama did, and this time publicly rather than in a private fundraiser.”

Donohue asked Hillary “to take the next step and tell us exactly what she plans to do about delivering on her pledge. Not only would practicing Catholics like to know, so would Evangelicals, Orthodox Jews, Muslims, and all those who value life from conception to natural death.”

You may watch Hillary's speech below.

Her comments on religion begin at approximately 9:00. 


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