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Indiana judge won’t block 10-year-old’s abortion investigation

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Indiana’s Republican attorney general may continue to investigate an Indianapolis doctor who publicly spoke about offering an abortion to a 10-year-old rape victim from neighboring Ohio, a judge said Friday. made a verdict.

An attempt by the office of Attorney General Todd Lokita to block an investigation was overruled by Marion County Judge Heather Welch. He ruled Friday in a separate lawsuit for violating signed state religious liberty laws. Mike Pence in 2015. But Indiana’s abortion ban is on hold Since mid-September, the court has reviewed a challenge from an abortion clinic operator who claims the ban violates the state constitution.

Judge’s verdict on investigation Dr. Caitlin Barnard Two days after the attorney general’s office called on the state’s medical licensing board to reprimand Bernard, Bernard violated state law by failing to report the girl’s child abuse to Indiana authorities and told a newspaper reporter about the girl’s treatment. He claimed that speaking violated patient privacy laws.

Weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the Roe v. Wade ruling in June, the story sparked a national political uproar, with some news outlets and Republican politicians faking Bernard’s story. suggested. After the enactment of more restrictive abortion laws in Ohio, the girl was unable to get an abortion.

Bernard sued Last month, it argued against the state attorney general that Rokita’s office was falsely justifying an investigation over “frivolous” consumer complaints filed by people with no personal knowledge of the girl’s treatment. Bernard and her lawyers allege the girl’s abuse had already been reported to the Ohio State Police before doctors saw the child.

However, the judge denied Bernard’s request for an injunction. Welch ruled that the Medical Licensing Board has jurisdiction over the matter since the attorney general filed the complaint on Wednesday. The commission, which has the power to suspend, revoke or suspend medical licenses, said it received the complaint on Friday but no date has been set for a hearing. Stated.

But Welch discovered that Rokita had erroneously made public comments about Bernard’s investigation before the complaint was filed. It is a clear and unlawful violation of the License Research Act’s requirement to maintain confidentiality regarding pending investigations.”

Kathleen Delaney, Bernard’s attorney, criticized Lokita for violating “confidentiality” and preemptively filing the case with the medical board, “taking it out of Judge Welch’s hands.”

“We are confident in the records and testimony we have already created and look forward to presenting Dr. Bernard’s evidence to the Board of Medical Admittance,” Delaney said.

The Attorney General’s Office said the ruling upheld patient privacy rights.

“The doctor and her attorney have created this media frenzy from the start and continue to draw attention to this innocent girl trying to deal with horrific trauma,” the office said in a statement.Rokita’s public on the matter. comment.

Bernard provided abortion pills to a girl in Indianapolis in late June. A doctor determined that the girl could not have an abortion in neighboring Ohio, she said. This is because the decision of the United States Supreme Court came into force. Such laws prohibit abortion from the point that fetal heart activity can be detected. This is usually around the 6th week of pregnancy.

Rokita continues its investigation after a 27-year-old man was charged with raping a girl in Columbus, Ohio, and public records obtained by the Associated Press show that Bernard had an abortion in Indiana. met the three-day reporting period required by the State of Indiana. She is under the age of 16.

In Welch’s ruling on the state’s abortion ban, the judge upheld five residents of Jewish, Muslim, and spiritual faiths who, if they believed abortion was acceptable, said the ban was a religious right. claimed to infringe

“The indisputable evidence is that plaintiffs do not share the state’s belief that life begins at conception, or that abortion constitutes the intentional taking of human life. “Conversely, they have different religious beliefs about when life begins. I will judge.”

Rokita’s office, which has defended the abortion ban in court, did not immediately comment on the ruling in the religious freedom lawsuit.

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Written by Natalia Chi

Chicago Popular; Chicago breaking news, weather and live video. Covering local politics, health, traffic and sports for Chicago, the suburbs and northwest Indiana.

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