According to a state court spokesperson, a New Jersey doctor will be extradited
to Maryland from Camden County to face
murder charges related to an abortion of a late-term fetus.
The 55-year-old doctor waived his right to an extradition hearing, according
to a spokesman from the Camden County prosecutor's office. The man
is charged with five counts of first-degree murder, as well as other charges.
His case, following his Dec. 28 arrest, could be the first heard under
Maryland's fetal homicide law.
According to police reports, the doctor and a female employee were investigated
in August 2010 after a botched abortion occurred in Elkton, Maryland,
where they were both present. The female employee faces one count of first-degree murder.
A source reports that, following a police search of the clinic, 35 fetuses
were found in a freezer.
No comment has been issued by Maryland prosecutors regarding how the murder
charges are connected to the frozen fetuses or the abortion.
If someone intends to cause the death of a viable fetus according to Maryland
criminal law, that person or persons can be charged with murder. A viable
fetus is defined as one that could survive outside of the womb.
The New Jersey State Board of Medical Examiners issued a report stating
the doctor performed abortions on five patients ranging from 18 to 33
weeks pregnant. The report indicated the doctor performed these abortions
in his New Jersey clinic by administering cervix-softening injections
that would cause fetal demise.
The abortions were apparently completed once patients traveled to Maryland.
"New Jersey doctor to be extradited to Maryland in abortion case," Jan. 4, 2012