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Posts Tagged ‘Judge Stephen Tatum’

The stakes are high for Planned Parenthood of Kansas Mid-Missouri, as the prosecution for allegedly illegal late term abortions in 2003 inches closer to trial under Judge Stephen Tatum. After years of fits and starts, and with a July 11 scheduling hearing, the judge has still not confirmed whether there will actually be any trial.

Steve Howe, the District Attorney for the Kansas-City suburban district of Johnson County, is pursuing 58 of 107 criminal charges initiated by Howe’s predecessor, Phill Kline.  In November, the prosecution had to abandon 49 charges, including felony false-writings (forged patient forms), when it was discovered that both the Kansas health department (under Gov. Sebelius) and the Attorney General’s office (under Steve Six) had shredded paper evidence crucial for conviction.

The charges remaining are 29 counts for “unlawful failure to determine gestational age” and 29 counts of “unlawful late-term abortions”. On Tuesday, seven filings by Planned Parenthood attorneys were “unsealed” (made publicly available) and include

pre-trial special requests by Planned Parenthood attorneys for extensive written jury questionnaires, with special one-on-one closed door interviews with potential jurors.

While technically permissible to poll jurors on their fitness to serve (i.e. citizenship, ties to litigators or their own criminal record) this specific request –if granted– would prevent the public from hearing in open court how Planned Parenthood attorneys ask invasive questions including (according to the filing)

the juror’s “religious” concerns and “personal, as well as family members and close friends’ experiences with abortion”!

Planned Parenthood attorneys also (more…)

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D.A. Steve Howe- case hurt with evidence destruction by former AG office & KDHE

District Judge Steve Tatum today dismissed 23 felony charges and 26 related misdemeanor charges against Planned Parenthood because the original paperwork critical to proving the charges was destroyed by state officials in 2005 and 2009.

58 misdemeanor charges for illegal late-term abortions remain to be prosecuted, and the next hearing is scheduled for Feb. 22.

UPDATE: AG Schmidt reveals investigation into evidence destruction under AG Six

Kansans for Life Executive Director, Mary Kay Culp, attended today’s hearing and said that Planned Parenthood’s attorney again went on a diatribe against Phill Kline and how the case had always been without merit. Culp commented:

“Despite Planned Parenthood’s pathetic efforts to once again use Phill Kline as a distraction, the facts are that two judges found probable cause to believe Planned Parenthood committed felonies, and the only reason it can’t be proved is selective and purposeful destruction of evidence at what may have been the very highest level of Kansas government.

At least four things need to happen:

  • a full scale investigation by current AG Schmidt of the destruction of evidence,
  • possible ethics charges against former AG Steve Six and co-conspirators,
  • a vigorous prosecution of Planned Parenthood by D.A. Howe for the remaining charges of illegal late-term abortions, and
  • a full review of this case in its entirety by the Kansas Legislature.”

The paperwork in question are the ‘Induced Termination of Pregnancy’ compliance forms (called ITOPs) submitted (more…)

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The pre-trial hearing for the felony prosecution of Planned Parenthood of Mid-Missouri Kansas has been delayed til Nov. 9  because 23 Planned Parenthood-specific state abortion reports have been discovered as destroyed.

Judge Stephen Tatum granted the continuance due to the state’s plea that only recently had they learned that crucial evidence for proving a forgery —original copies of those state late-term abortion compliance reports from Planned Parenthoodhad been destroyed in 2005 by the state of Kansas Health department (KDHE) under Gov. Kathleen Sebelius.

Despite requests, the KDHE has not yet issued a public comment on this bombshell that it had actually destroyed selective documents.

Back in 2005, Sebelius was losing her fight to keep various subpoenaed state information relevant to illegal post–viability abortions away from then-Attorney General Phill Kline.  Kline had attained what’s called “probable cause” that crimes had been committed and was seeking patient files.  But he had also seen copies of these state compliance reports which bore no patient names but were important because they had been filed with bogus language where legitimate medical reasons were supposed to have been supplied.

Political machinations swallowed those anticipated big-gun prosecutions.  Kline lost his 2006 re-election campaign, but became the District attorney for Johnson County, the home of the Kansas Planned Parenthood abortion facility.   He lodged 107 criminal charges against Planned Parenthood in October 2007, including 23 felony counts for allegedly forging copies of the 2003 state reports in August 2006.

The case was repeatedly stalled when KDHE steadfastly refused to bring the original reports to court in 2008 and never gave a hint that the 23 reports had already been destroyed 3 years earlier! (more…)

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