Tuesday, May 04, 2010

1987: "Like a haunted house"

Twenty-four-year-old Patricia King went to Dean H. Diment in Tulsa, Oklahoma, for a safe and legal abortion on May 4, 1987.

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. Diment told them 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.

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. Patricia's sister described the facility as "like a haunted house."

For more abortion deaths, visit the Cemetery of Choice:

To email this post to a friend, use the icon below.

No comments: