Friday, May 13, 2005

Consent is not a defense for baseball bat abortion

The Detroit Free Press is reporting that a Macomb County judge has ruled that the teenage boy who beat his pregnant girlfriend with a souvenir baseball bat over the span of weeks to kill their unborn child will stand trial even though his girlfriend consented to the beatings.

Circuit Judge Matthew Switalski said Thursday that in light of a state law requiring minors to get approval from a parent or judge before having an abortion, the girl -- then 16 years old -- could not legally consent to the blows to her stomach that the Macomb County Prosecutor's Office says ended her pregnancy....

The girl, now 17, is not charged with a crime, but her boyfriend, a 17-year-old Richmond Township resident, was charged with intentional conduct against a pregnant individual resulting in miscarriage or stillbirth, a 15-year felony. If convicted, he could end up under the jurisdiction of the Macomb County Juvenile Court until he turns 21.

In October, police recovered a 26-week-old fetus from a field near the boy's home. The teens admitted that he struck her in hopes of ending the pregnancy.

Though I believe the boy should be charged, I'm not thrilled at this time with the reasoning behind the judge's decision. By his reasoning it seems that women who are 18 or older could have their boyfriends, husbands or whoever beat their unborn child to death and as long as the non-minor woman consented to the beating, then the beater would be exempt from punishment.

Related posts
Terminating pregnancy with a baseball bat
Souvenir bat wielding boyfriend is charged

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