Life Legal is working with CEC for Life, Operation Rescue, and other pro-lifers to shut down an Alabama abortion mill after a woman died following her visit to the clinic and another woman was severely injured.
In May 2020, 29-year-old April Lowery died from internal bleeding caused by a perforated cervix a few hours after she had a procedure done at West Alabama Women’s Center (WAWC).
On December 28, 2020, “Jane Stone” (a pseudonym) suffered serious injuries during a botched second-trimester abortion at WAWC. During her pre-abortion exam, a nurse employed by WAWC told “she could tell the baby had Downs Syndrome based on the appearance of his eyes.” This is medically erroneous. While second trimester ultrasounds can provide “soft markers” or certain indicators that a baby may have Down syndrome, the appearance of a baby’s eyes is not one of those markers.
When Jane asked about abortion risks, the nurse told Jane that hemorrhaging was “the primary complication related to the procedure,” but that any hemorrhaging would be “treated at the clinic internally” – i.e., at WAWC, not a hospital.
As Jane arrived at WAWC for the abortion, over 30 people were in the clinic’s waiting room. The nurse told her the clinic was “overbooked and understaffed.”
During the abortion, abortionist Tamar Middleton lacerated Jane’s cervix and perforated her uterus. WAWC staff refused to call for help and instead carried Jane into a recovery room where she was unmonitored and passed out numerous times because of profuse bleeding. Jane begged the nurses to call an ambulance, but they told her she was overreacting and that she “just needed to calm down.”
An hour later, WAWC could not get Jane’s pulse and finally called for help. The ambulance driver reported that by that time, Jane was “unresponsive” and that the EMT’s could not obtain her blood pressure. Shortly after she was transferred to the hospital, Jane underwent emergency surgery and, because of the damage caused by WAWC, had to have a hysterectomy.
A week after April Lowery’s death, WAWC’s owner sold the clinic to the Yellowhammer Fund, a “reproductive rights” advocacy group that hired Leah Torres to run the mill. In September 2020, the Alabama Board of Medical Examiners ordered Torres to surrender her medical license when it discovered that Torres had lied about her medical history, which constituted “an immediate danger to her patients and/or the public.”
Last year, Life Legal sued WAWC and several Alabama officials for failing to protect babies from abortion pursuant to Alabama’s Amendment 930, which recognizes the rights of unborn children, including the right to life. The Amendment states that “it is the public policy of this state to ensure the protection of the rights of the unborn child.” Our suit was filed on behalf of “Baby Q,” who represents preborn African-American children who are disproportionately killed by abortion. Over 60% of all abortions in Alabama are committed on black babies.
WAWC has tried – so far unsuccessfully – to dismiss our lawsuit.