Preparing for a Post-Roe America

Friday, June 26, 2020

Pamela Colson With New Clippings

Pamela Colson, age 31, was 12 weeks pregnant when friends drive her to Women's Medical Services in Pensacola, Florida, for a safe and legal abortion on Saturday, June 25, 1994. The abortion was performed by Dr. William Philip Keene.

Pamela bled heavily during the drive home. According to her friends, Pamela became unresponsive at around 7:30 p.m., so they stopped at a motel. Two passers-by did CPR while Pamela's friends called for an ambulance. Pamela was taken to a hospital where she had to be resuscitated because she was in full cardiac arrest. She died shortly after midnight the following day after an emergency hysterectomy.

Her autopsy showed: bloodstained fluid in chest and peritoneal space, and "extensive hematoma formation in the pelvic area with the peritoneum denuded from the left gutter area caudually." The surgeon who performed an emergency hysterectomy, trying to save Pamela's life, had removed her uterus at the site of the laceration "so that the laceration was a portion of the incision made to remove the uterus." Her uterus showed extensive hemorrhage and blood clots. Her uterine artery was also injured. Several of Pamela's ribs were fractured, apparently during attempts to resuscitate her; this is common in even properly performed CPR.

The cause of death was given as "irreversible shock from blood loss due to a perforated uterus occurring at the time of an elective abortion." William Keene was tentatively identified as having performed the abortion.

Pamela's fatal abortion was performed at the clinic where abortionist David Gun was shot dead.

After the investigation into Pamela's death, Keene was fired from Sarasota Women's Health Center. The director of Women's Medical Service, on the other hand, pooh-poohed the idea of dismissing Keene. "Of course he's allowed to perform abortions. That's a ridiculous question. Complications occur all the time," clinic director Sandy Sheldon told the Tuscaloosa News. She insisted that Pamela had seemed fine, talking and eating, before being discharged from the clinic.

Pamela's family didn't find out about her death until the following Tuesday because they were traveling at the time. They sued the clinic but the case was dismissed because of the plaintiff attorney's failure to submit an investigation in a timely manner.

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Jane Doe of Newark With New Clippings

A 20-year-old Newark college student, identified in prolife sources as "Jane Doe of Newark," underwent a safe and legal abortion by Dr. Steven Berkman at Metropolitan Medical Associates on June 16, 1993. She was in the second trimester of pregnancy.

Jane reportedly felt dizzy in recovery. Berkman examined her, noted that she had a perforated uterus, and had her taken to a hospital by ambulance. She died in surgery, leaving her four-year-old son motherless.

"We are intensely investigating this matter," said an attorney for Jane's family. "We know something occurred that shouldn't have. We had a healthy 20-year-old go into that clinic and not come out. And I think a delay had something to do with it." Her medical chart showed the injury occurring at 10 a.m., but the ambulance wasn't summoned until two hours later.

A state report cited "chaos and confusion" when the ambulance arrived at the clinic to find Jane lifeless. The ambulance workers were not given adequate information about her condition.

Berkman said that there was no delay in transporting Jane to the hospital. He also said he did not believe she died from blood loss. The Bergen County Medical Examiner found that Jane had died from hemorrhage from a perforated uterus. Jane also had developed a clotting disorder that made it difficult to stop any bleeding. He ruled the death accidental.

Jane Roe is "Tracy" on Life Dynamics' "Blackmun Wall".

Sunday, June 14, 2020

Angela Hall, Updated and with Pics and New Clippings

Angela Hall, a 27-year-old mother of five, felt unable to deal with a sixth child. She saw an advertisement for safe, legal abortionat Thomas Tucker's office in Alabama.  The ad, which pictured a couple walking arm-in-arm, said that Tucker did abortions to 24 weeks. Angela called to schedule an appointment. 

Angela was keeping the abortion a secret from her mother, and drove to Tucker's Birmingham clinic with a friend, Annette Wilson. One of Tucker's employees, Joy Davis, screened Angela and felt that she had risk factors that made abortion in an office setting unsafe. She had a fever and was anemic. Joy got on the phone with Tucker and indicated that she felt that Angela should be referred to a hospital. Tucker told Davis that "we need the money. Just do it. Just put the patient through." 

Tucker ordered her to prep Angela, who was in the second trimester of pregnancy. The fee for Angela's abortion was $1,800. She was already unconscious, under general anesthesia, when Tucker started the abortion on June 11, 1991. Angela started gasping for breath. Her blood pressure fell, setting off an alarm on a piece of monitoring equipment. Tucker told Davis to turn the alarm off because other patients could hear it. "It was a very panicked atmosphere," Joy Davis said. "Dr. Tucker was screaming at us." He managed to stabilize Angela's blood pressure and sent her to the recovery room.

While in recovery, Angela bled so heavily that Davis became alarmed and called an ambulance. "Blood was running down the table," Joy Davis tearfully told reporters. "It was pooling in the floor and running down behind her back." Angela's sheets and hospital gown were soaked. Davis said that Tucker told her that he was the doctor and if anybody was going to make a decision to call the ambulance, it was going to be him.

Davis reported to Tucker that Angela was bleeding through the packing put in place after the abortion, and asked him to do something for his patient.

"What do you want me to do?" he asked her. 

"I don't know," Davis said she responded, "but I want you to do something. She's going to lay here and die."

"Fine. Call the f*ing ambulance," Tucker said before leaving the building, according to Davis. He was loath to call an ambulance, Davis reported, because he had already referred a patient to a hospital that day for complications. 

Angela was taken to the hospital, where she suffered respiratory failure, clotting, and sepsis. It was hours after she was admitted that her friend finally called her mother, in hysterics, to say that Angela was being taken to the Intensive Care Unit. Annette didn't mention the abortion. Angela's mother rushed to the hospital, where she saw her daughter hooked up to tubes, pale, and breathing only faintly. 

She died just before midnight June 14. The autopsy found numerous tears and lesions in the pelvic area, and congestive necrosis in Angela's liver and spleen. The doctors concluded that amniotic fluid embolism had caused clotting problems resulting in necrosis, septic shock, and cardiac arrest. 

When Alabama authorities subpoenaed Angela's records, Tucker ordered Davis to destroy some and falsify others. Davis tore up the records, which he then tried to burn in an ash tray, Davis said. When this set off the clinic's smoke alarm, Tucker put out the fire, bagged up the papers, and told Davis to take the papers to the basement and burn them. Instead, she said, she taped them back together and eventually turned them over to the medical board. 

During the initial investigation, the board learned that Tucker allowed his untrained staff to do medical procedures, including inserting the laminaria sticks to dilate a patient's cervix prior to the abortion, while he wasn't even in-state much less at the clinic.

Tucker surrendered his medical license in order to halt the investigation, planning to renew his license at a later date.

It is interesting to note that in the publicity surrounding the lawsuit filed by Angela's family, Ron Fitzsimmons of the National Coalition of Abortion Providers, among other prochoice groups, balked at efforts to close Tucker down, on the grounds that he was Alabama's only abortionist, and that even he was better than no abortionist at all.

Angela's parents took their five grandchildren into their two-bedroom house. Her youngest child has no memories of his mother, only of taking flowers to her grave.

Monday, May 04, 2020

New Clippings, Information, and Photos for Patricia King

Twenty-four-year-old Patricia Ann King went to Dean H. Diment in Tulsa, Oklahoma, for a safe and legal abortion on May 4, 1987. She was a smoker and was obese, two risk factors that Diment should have been taking carefully into account when administering general anesthesia.
Patricia went into cardiac arrest after being injected with anesthetic

Paramedics arrived at Diment's Statewide Clinic and found the place so unclean that they could have written their names in the dust. Patricia's sister later described the facility as "like a haunted house." 

Diment told the edics that he had injected Neo-Synephrine and sodium bicarbonate into Patricia's heart but no one had performed CPR or made any other attempt to revive her. She had been in arrest for 20 minutes. Paramedics could not revive her. They had trouble merely getting her through the building and out the door -- having to tilt the gurney at a 60-degree angle just to navigate the corridors. 

Diment's associates at Statewide Clinic had a history of legal troubles. The medical director, Jimmie C. Tooney, had pleaded guilty in 1973 of writing narcotics prescriptions for a convicted drug dealer. Administrator William R. Cloud had been charged with conspiracy to commit illegal abortion in the early 1970's but had the charge dropped after abortion was legalized by Roe v. Wade.

Statewide Clinic advertised that it was "licensed by the state," but at the time of Patricia's death, abortion clinics were not regulated by the state of Oklahoma. Statewide had not been inspected since the attorney general had declared state oversight unconstitutional in 1984. 

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Gloria Aponte with New Clipping

Twenty-year-old Gloria Aponte went to National Abortion Federation member Hanan Rotem in Stamford, Connecticut, for a safe and legal abortion on April 29, 1986. She was in the second trimester of her pregnancy. 

A few hours after the abortion, Gloria was declared dead from hemorrhage at a nearby hospital. Gloria, wife of Carlo Aponte, had been a homemaker and mother of one.

Rotem claimed that Gloria had died from an amniotic fluid embolism. An investigation by health officials found that Rotem had failed to perform necessary blood tests, such as hematocrit and Rh factor, and had permitted a receptionist with no medical training to administer anesthesia. Rotem had no hospital privileges and no emergency patient transfer agreement in place. For his fatal treatment of Gloria, he was fined a total of $2,000.

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Gosnell: The Untold Story -- Finishing Chapter Three: "Gosnell Thinks He's Innocent"

I'm still working on Gosnell: The Untold Story of America's Most Prolific Serial Killer, by Ann McElhinney and Phelim McAleer. As I listen, I'm blogging about relevant material that I know from over 35 years of abortion research. Links to previous commentaries are at the bottom of this post.

"Gosnell Thinks He's Innocent"

This gets back to the fact that the shocking thing about the Gosnell case is that it was vigorously and successfully prosecuted. What he was doing differed from what other abortionists do primarily in degree, not existentially. Killing born alive babies, having unqualified staff, performing illegal third-trimester abortions, faking patient records, having a dirty facility, dealing drugs, stockpiling fetal remains, having no functioning emergency equipment …. The only thing that I've seen in other clinics that Gosnell wasn't doing was sexually abusing patients. Of course Gosnell must feel bewildered that he's in prison for life for doing what other people do and get away with. Thank you, Detective Jim Wood. I wish there was somebody like you holding every abortionist in this country accountable for the things they do.

Think about how big a part of the abortion establishment Gosnell was.

He attended National Abortion Federation events. These are a chance for abortion workers to really relax among their fellows and talk about things that they won't talk about in public. They're a setting where it's safe to laugh about a baby's eyeball falling into your lap. It's a place where it's safe to admit that you do dangerous things and while you might get scolded, nobody is going to rat you out. So I have little doubt that Gosnell and his buddies swapped stories and gave each other helpful hints. I remember listening to one NAF tape where a woman was telling her fellows how to deal with the media after a patient death: "You have to look compassionate. You have to sound compassionate. And that's hard, I know."

I have absolutely zero doubt that Gosnell expected to get the same treatment Bruce Steir did when he killed Sharon Hamplton. He thought his friends would rally around him. He expected to get the support George Tiller got when Phil Kline was trying to hold him accountable for perpetrating illegal third trimester abortions.

In a way, I almost feel sorry for him. I've never been able to figure out why some abortionists are thrown under the bus, others are ignored, and others are defended. And I get the feeling Gosnell is wondering the same thing.

Prior posts:

The Death of Diamond Williams

As I'm going through my commentaries on the book, Gosnell: The Untold Story of America's Most Prolific Serial Killer, I've been catching up on things I should have been blogging. Today I'm going to do adequate posts about two of the women that have died since the release of the Grand Jury Report in the Gosnell case. Judge Renee Cardwell Hughes specified that the report must in no way implicate the abortion establishment in any way. She made a choice to withhold information that would warn women of systemic problems in the abortion establishment. I hold her partially responsible for these women's deaths.

Diamond Williams
Diamond Williams was one of those women. Diamond, an 18-year-old African-American woman with diabetes and obesity, went to Carolina Center for Women to undergo an abortion at 6.5 weeks of pregnancy on Saturday, January 23, 2016. She was a high-risk patient due to her health issues.

Diamond and her mother, Sharika, arrived early in the morning. Sharika sat in the waiting room all day. Nobody told her what was happening with her daughter.

Finally the clinic staff began to turn out the lights to close the clinic. Sharika had to pound on the glass at the receptionist's station to get somebody's attention. They had her walk around to a side door to meet Diamond and take her home.

Diamond was in a lot of pain that night, so Sharika called the clinic's after-hours number. She was reassured that the pain was normal. As long as there was no bleeding or fever, there was nothing to worry about.

Diamond was still in a lot of pain on Monday, so she called the clinic asking to schedule a follow-up visit. She was told that a nurse would call her back. That call never came.

On Tuesday evening, Diamond appeared to be feeling a little bit better, but she was still in pain so her mother made plans to take her to their primary care physician in the morning. Diamond headed to her room to get ready for bed. Then Sharika heard her daughter scream. She ran to find Diamond lying face-down, foaming at the mouth and unable to speak. The family called 911, and the operator thought Diamond was probably having a seizure.

When EMS arrived, the interpreted the family's hysteria as aggression and wouldn't enter the house until police arrived and the other children and the family dog were secured in a bedroom.

Sharika said that the medics didn't seem to be doing much to help her daughter other than just trying to get her to stand up. They finally rolled her onto a body bag, dragged her to the back patio, and lifted her onto a gurney. Sharika rode to the hospital with the police officer. At the hospital she was left alone in a room. A chaplain came and prayed with her while she waited to hear from the doctor.

Finally a doctor came and told Sharika that Diamond had a pulse and was being transferred to the Intensive Care Unit. She was allowed to visit her daughter briefly and described her as "bleeding from everywhere." Diamond died on January 27.

The autopsy was performed at the hospital. Sharika had to get a lawyer and wrangle for a year to get a copy of the autopsy report, and even then she was only provided with the last four pages of a 62-page report. It didn't note a cause of death or manner of death but did note diagnoses of amniotic fluid embolism (AFE) and Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation (DIC), a disorder in which the body's clotting factors in the blood are out of whack. One form of the disorder results in the sort of bleeding Sharika saw when Diamond was in the ICU. DIC can be triggered by an amniotic fluid embolism.

It seems strange that Diamond would suffer an amniotic fluid embolism from an abortion performed that early in the pregnancy.

Strangely enough, though Diamond had been diagnosed with DIC and AFE, the provisional cause of death was bronchopneumonia.

As Sharika tried to pursue a malpractice case against the clinic -- which refused to tell her the name of the physician -- she learned that her attorney had a conflict of interest because he also represented the clinic in other cases. To make things even harder, the clinic changed its name.

I've been unable to find any further information about Diamond's death.

The Death of Shirelle H

As I'm going through my commentaries on the book, Gosnell: The Untold Story of America's Most Prolific Serial Killer, I've been catching up on things I should have been blogging. Today I'm going to do adequate posts about two of the women that have died since the release of the Grand Jury Report in the Gosnell case. Judge Renee Cardwell Hughes specified that the report must in no way implicate the abortion establishment in any way. She made a choice to withhold information that would warn women of systemic problems in the abortion establishment. I hold her partially responsible for these women's deaths.

I don't like to dehumanize women by just using initials, so the woman identified in medical board documents as "S.H." will be called "Shirelle."

Frank Rodriguez
On September 22, 2012, 31-year-old Shirelle went to Presidential Women's Center in West Palm Beach, Florida, for an abortion. There, Dr. Frank Rodriguez pushed a cervical dilator into Shirelle's uterus and left it there. Shirelle died five days later, on September 27.

It's interesting to note that the medical board doesn't mention Shirelle's death in the disciplinary documents. Operation Rescue discovered the death on a malpractice payout reporting form.

Evidently the insurance payout was done quietly, since I have not been able to find any newspaper coverage of Shirelle's death.
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