CALGARY, November 26, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A woman charged with killing her boyfriend is claiming she stabbed the man in self-defense when he attacked her for refusing to have an abortion.
Melinda Morin, 29, is charged with second-degree murder in the Nov. 10, 2009, stabbing death of Barry Neil Godwin.
Morin testified in court that her refusal to abort their baby caused Godwin to become enraged.
“I told him I didn’t want to go for an abortion. I’d keep the baby and I wouldn’t bother him. I’d take care of it myself,” Morin told her lawyer, Mitch Stephensen, during the trial. “But he didn’t want to know there was a kid out there that was his. He was upset and he wanted me to have an abortion. No way around it. So I was trying to leave.”
When Morin tried to leave the apartment, she said Godwin kicked her in the stomach and tried to prevent her from leaving. She said she managed to reach the bottom of the stairs when Godwin threw a kitchen knife at her and then came after her with another one.
“He was coming towards me. I was scared. He was attacking me. I’ve never seen him so angry, the look in his face,” she testified, saying she then picked up the knife from the floor.
“I was at the bottom of the stairs. That’s when I looked at him, saw the knife in his hand. I stabbed him and he collapsed,” she told the court.
The case is being heard at the same time that a bill is being debated in Parliament that addresses the type of situation described in the Calgary courtroom.
Bill C-510, also called “Roxanne’s Law,” is named after Roxanne Fernando, a Manitoba woman whose boyfriend attempted to coerce her to have an abortion after she became pregnant in 2007. After refusing to have the unborn child killed, Roxanne was beaten and left to die in a snow bank.
The bill was introduced by Conservative Member of Parliament Rod Bruinooge (Winnipeg South) in April, and received its first hour of debate on November 1st.
“No pregnant woman should ever have to choose between protecting herself and protecting her baby,” Bruinooge told the House of Commons.
“Roxanne Fernando is someone I view as a real hero in this country,” Bruinooge, who serves as chair of the parliamentary pro-life caucus, told LifeSiteNews just before the bill came up for debate.
“Choosing to not end her pregnancy is the very thing that led to her untimely death, and as she was dying in the snow bank, I’m sure she cried out and there was no one there to hear her.”
Bruinooge said his bill will “clarify the law.” “I believe it would have made a difference to Roxanne and I think it empowers all women,” he said.
Bill C-510 will receive a second hour of debate on December 13th and is scheduled for a vote on December 15th.