Woman refuses CS, charged with murder - page 2

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (03-11) 13:49 PST SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- A pregnant woman who allegedly ignored medical warnings to have a... Read More

  1. by   Jolie
    Did she deliver vaginally then?

    My heart cries for all the wonderful parents (and would-be-parents) who have suffered thru infertility, complicated pregnancies, losses, premature births, etc. only to hear this sickening story. God rest that baby's precious soul.
  2. by   KMSRN
    Quote from BRANDY LPN
    I don't see how she could be found mentally stable enough to be granted custody but heck Im not a lawyer.
    In this country, you can choose to abort an unborn baby up until the last minute of gestation. Would you say a woman who chooses abortion is also an unfit parent? Is there is a difference between the mother who knowingly allows her unborn child to die, and one who chooses to terminate the pregnancy at the last minute? According to our law, an unborn child lives based on the choice of the mother. I'm not trying to make a judgement here, but we can't have it both ways. As it stands right now, an unborn baby only has as much status as the mother allows. If she wishes to have the baby then causing it harm is a crime. If she doesn't wish to have the baby, then she is free to end its life. Based on that, she didn't commit murder. And if she is found unstable and unfit, then any woman terminating would be ustable and unfit and vice versa.
  3. by   fergus51
    I think we need to be careful of what we all read into the story. It wouldn't be the first time a prosecutor embellished.

    I still don't see how she can be charges with anything, but social services can still investigate and determine if she can keep the other child.
  4. by   purplemania
    what if she had requested a CS and the MD refused? Would the MD be charged with murder? I think she should be sterilized and the other baby taken away from her!
  5. by   longtermcarern
    purple mania, I have often wondered the same thing, in 1977 I gave birth to a stillborn baby girl after my water broke 36 hours before. The doctor's nurse was also in labor and she wore the hospitals only fetal monitor, she stayed in the hospital the whole time. I didn't have insurance and the doctor sent me home to wait it out. during the first 32 hours the baby kicked then there was nothing. My next OB-GYN stated it was murder but no one would do anything about it.
  6. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Quote from fergus51
    I think we need to be careful of what we all read into the story. It wouldn't be the first time a prosecutor embellished.

    I still don't see how she can be charges with anything, but social services can still investigate and determine if she can keep the other child.
    i agree w/fergus here. we need to be smart and not make assumptions of any sort here. the whole story is not told, i think.
  7. by   fergus51
    A doctor wouldn't be charged with murder anyways, it would be malpractice. But for it to be murder as I understand it, he would have to intentionally do something knowing it would cause the death. That's not the same as "your baby could die if you don't have a section" cause it could also do fine as the surviving twin did.

    I am outraged there are women who don't care enough about their babies, but I am glad we are not forcibly sterilizing women yet.
  8. by   kids
    I think she should be tried for exactly what she did: knowingly, willfully and possibly with premeditation cause that baby's death and endangered the life of the surviving twin.
    I don't think the Prosecution has jumped the gun with a murder charge. They took almost 2 months to investigate and consider appropriate charges under their State laws.

    Between Christmas and January 9th (my estimate is 16 days) she went to three different hospitals. Three different times she was told she needed a c-section to save her babies lives. Three different times she chose her own vanity over the welfare of her babies.
    Is there an indication she had a religious objection? No, she just didn't want a scar.
    Is there an indication she wanted to seek a second opinion? No, she just didn't want a scar.
    Is there an indication she was fearful of prematurity? No, she just didn't want a scar.

    Would the baby have survived if she had been sectioned? Hard to say but I am inclined to think it probably would have. It was last known to be alive on January 9 and the autopsy reports the baby was alive until 2 days before it was delivered on January 13th.

    Because it has been brought up I have tried hard to but just can't find a way that a discussion on abortion is really relevant to this event. There is no indication that she wanted to terminate, the implication is that she intended to carry to term and deliver, she went to the hospital in the first place out of concern for decreased movement. The story doesn't report that when told 1 or both babies would die without a c-section that she said "oh no, I'd rather have an abortion" the reports are that her response was "I would rather have a dead baby than a scar".
  9. by   AlaskaKat
    ABC News reported it slightly different. It put much more of a slant on her being mentally ill, and also reported that the surviving twin has been adopted out and she does not have custody of her other children (at least there's that). I agree that this is a terrible tragedy, but, unfortunately it probably can't be called murder. If it is then we can start prosecuting all the women who blow their placentas off with cocaine and come in with dead babies...

    Here's the ABC story:

    Utah Woman Charged With Murdering Fetus
    Utah Woman Who Refused a Caesarean Section Is Charged With Murdering Fetus

    The Associated Press



    SALT LAKE CITY March 12-A woman accused of murder because she allegedly avoided a Caesarean section that could have saved her unborn twin has denied the charge, saying she already had scars from earlier C-sections.
    Her attorney, meanwhile, said she had a long history of mental illness.





    Melissa Ann Rowland, 28, was charged Thursday of showing "depraved indifference to human life," ignoring medical advice to deliver her twins by C-section because she didn't want to be scarred. One nurse told police Rowland said she would rather "lose one of the babies than be cut like that."

    Rowland told Salt Lake City radio station KSL from jail that "I already have a pretty nasty scar, it doesn't matter at all now," The Salt Lake Tribune reported.

    Her attorney, Michael Sikora, called a C-section major surgery and told the Tribune "it would come as no surprise that a woman with major mental illness would fear it."

    The documents allege that Rowland was warned numerous times between Christmas and Jan. 9 that her unborn twins would likely die if she did not get immediate medical treatment, the documents allege. When she delivered them on Jan. 13, the twin girl survived but the boy died.

    Shortly afterward, Rowland was jailed on a child endangerment charge involving the surviving twin, who has been adopted by a family Rowland knows.

    Rowland told the radio station she has two other children who live with their grandparents in Virginia. Sikora said Rowland moved to Utah with a boyfriend and is either divorced or estranged from her husband. She lives in the Salt Lake City suburb of West Jordan.

    A spokesman for the district attorney, Kent Morgan, had said earlier that Rowland was married.

    The case could affect abortion rights and open the door to the prosecution of mothers who smoke or don't follow their obstetrician's diet, said Marguerite Driessen, a law professor at Brigham Young University.

    "It's very troubling to have somebody come in and say we're going to charge this mother for murder because we don't like the choices she made," she said.

    The woman sought medical advice in December because she hadn't felt the fetuses move, documents said.

    Regina Davis, a nurse at LDS Hospital in Salt Lake, told police that during a visit there, Rowland was recommended two hospitals to go to for immediate care. Rowland allegedly said she would rather have both twins die before she went to either of the suggested hospitals.

    On Jan. 2, a doctor at LDS Hospital saw Rowland and recommended she immediately undergo a C-section based on the results of an ultrasound and the fetus' slowing heart rates. Rowland left after signing a document stating that she understood that leaving might result in death or brain injury to one or both twins, the doctor told police.

    The same day, a nurse at Salt Lake Regional Hospital saw Rowland, who allegedly told her she had left LDS Hospital because the doctor wanted to cut her "from breast bone to pubic bone," a procedure that would "ruin her life."

    LDS Hospital can't comment on the case because of medical privacy issues and the pending court case, said spokesman Robert Pexton.

    The doctor who performed an autopsy found that the fetus died two days before delivery and would have survived if Rowland had undergone a C-section when urged to do so. It was not immediately clear how far along Rowland was in her pregnancy.

    She was charged in Salt Lake County with one first-degree felony count of criminal homicide. Rowland was being held on $250,000 bail at the Salt Lake County jail, and was scheduled to appear in court Tuesday.

    If convicted, she could be sentenced to between five years and life in prison.

    "We are unable to find any reason other than the cosmetic motivations by the mother" for her decision, Morgan said.

    Caesarean sections usually involve delivery through a surgical incision in the abdomen and front wall of the uterus. Dr. Christian Morgan, a family practice doctor who regularly performs C-sections at the University of Utah Health Sciences Center, said he had never seen vertical skin incisions performed at LDS Hospital for a first-time C-section.

    "Even when you need to get a baby out in minutes, it can still be done in the bikini incision," Christian Morgan said.
  10. by   KriseeLPN
    Quote from KMSRN
    I don't see how they can charge her with murder. If a baby's life is based on the choice of the mother, then allowing one twin to die could not be considered murder. If that sticks then they could charge women who have late term abortions with murder. :stone

    It would be legal for her to have a later term abortion but not refuse a c=section? Not that I agree with the decision based on what they are stating as her reasoning..but the law in this case is being hypocritical
  11. by   BabyRN2Be
    I came upon the later report as I was reading this, and before I had read what Alaskakat had posted, I had a few feelings of my own.

    I know this might be a little unpopular, but I'd show a little mercy to the mother. I'd say that she was dealing with a mental illness and that wasn't pointed out in the earlier report. Her actions support that a decision wasn't made with a clear mind and she shouldn't be charged with anything depending on what a psych eval says about her. I'm very pro-life, and I feel for those who aren't able to have any children but also, I feel very bad for the mom who is going through a bout of what sounds like a mental illness.

    Obviously, she wasn't informed of the basics of the surgery. No one would have told her that she would be cut from her breastbone to her pubic bone, even in the case of a vertical c/s. Most cuts are of the transverse bikini type unless there are other indications, but a scar would not be as big as the woman thought.

    I feel very badly for her and I'll be praying for the surviving twin.

    Katherine
  12. by   CoffeeRTC
    Quote from BabyRN2Be
    I came upon the later report as I was reading this, and before I had read what Alaskakat had posted, I had a few feelings of my own.

    I know this might be a little unpopular, but I'd show a little mercy to the mother. I'd say that she was dealing with a mental illness and that wasn't pointed out in the earlier report. Her actions support that a decision wasn't made with a clear mind and she shouldn't be charged with anything depending on what a psych eval says about her. I'm very pro-life, and I feel for those who aren't able to have any children but also, I feel very bad for the mom who is going through a bout of what sounds like a mental illness.

    Obviously, she wasn't informed of the basics of the surgery. No one would have told her that she would be cut from her breastbone to her pubic bone, even in the case of a vertical c/s. Most cuts are of the transverse bikini type unless there are other indications, but a scar would not be as big as the woman thought.

    I feel very badly for her and I'll be praying for the surviving twin.

    Katherine


    From what I heard and read.. she has had two other children via c section.. I think she knew what this intailed.
  13. by   RubyRN,CHPN
    She made an informed choice. We as professionals are not to judge and assume the role of the investigative body and prosecution.

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