By Dave Andrusko
A jury trial expected to last 10 days began yesterday in a malpractice suit brought against notorious late-term abortionist Warren Hern.
The unidentified woman who was 25 weeks pregnant when she aborted, alleges that Hern “missed part of the fetus’ skull — found embedded in the wall of her uterus more than a year later,” according to the Lincoln Journal Star’s Lori Pilger.
Pilger writes the woman and her husband are
seeking money damages for medical care, physical pain and mental suffering, as well as permanent injury, including the loss of her ability to conceive children.
Their attorney, Terry Dougherty of Lincoln, alleges Hern had failed to warn her of the increased risks and negligently misrepresented that the fetus had been entirely removed.
Amy Cook Olson, Hern’s attorney, “was expected to argue at trial it was the decision to perform a hysterectomy by the woman’s own primary doctor that caused her injuries, not him, according to a trial brief filed in the case,” Pilger reported.
In December 2013 , the woman traveled to Hern’s Boulder, Colorado, clinic where Hern aborted her nearly third-trimester baby. According to court records, the following spring her regular doctor changed her birth control after she had “break-through bleeding,” thinking that the bleeding was the result of a hormonal imbalance. Dougherty wrote in a trial brief, Pilger explained, that
when the bleeding continued a gynecologist ordered an ultrasound that revealed the cause: a 4-centimeter long object, consistent with the curved portion of a fetus’ skull, cutting into her uterine wall.
Why did she abort? In court records, Dougherty said the unidentified woman was told by her doctor in November 2013
that an MRI had shown their baby boy was missing a part of his brain and would live less than a year if he even survived the delivery. Delivery also posed significant health risk to the mother, they were told.
Pilger writes that Dougherty
alleges Hern breached his standard of care by not warning her of an increased risk that fragments of bone could be left behind if he proceeded even though she failed to dilate more than 1 or 2 centimeters. He says it was medical malpractice.
Hern’s attorney, Cook Olson, denied it….
Hern, who wrote a textbook on abortion techniques, is well-known to veteran pro-lifers for performing abortions well into the third trimester, including routinely tearing huge babies apart in “D&E” abortions. Among his many blood-curdling comments, perhaps his most famous came in a 1978 paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association of Planned Parenthood Physicians where he said that
“there is no possibility of denial of an act of destruction by the operator [of a D&E abortion]. It is before one’s eyes. The sensations of dismemberment flow through the forceps like an electric current.”