Friday, April 27, 2012

Lingering Death, a Baby Tossed in the River, and Bleeding to Death in Front of Her Children

Dr. Charles P. Wood admitted that Elvira Woodward had come to his house in Manchester, New Hampshire, on April 1 and remained there until her death on April 27, 1871. He said that she'd expelled a dead fetus on April 3, and that she suffered from puerperal fever. Elvira took ill, languishing and finally dying on April 27, at about 2:30 PM, at Wood's house. Dr. Wood was convicted of performing the fatal abortion on Elvira. It is unclear how the prosecutor or the jury identified him, from among all the doctors who had attended Elvira, as the guilty party. Still, Elvira's abortion was typical of pre-legalization abortions in that it was performed by a physician.

Miss Emily LeBinney, "whose family is said to be wealthy and to move in fashionable circles," died the evening of April 7, 1896, in the New York practice of midwife Mary Schott. Emily's baby was born alive during the abortion, and Arthur Robbins, whose relationship to the other parties is not given, threw the living child into the river.

On April 27, 1990, 28-year-old divorcee Sandra Milton underwent an abortion, performed by Dr. Carl Armstrong at Toledo Medical Services in Ohio. Sandra's abortion was performed at 10 a.m., and she was discharged shortly thereafter for the 90-minute drive home to Sandusky. The babysitter stayed with Sandra and her three children for three hours as the young mother slipped in and out of consciousness and suffered pain and abdominal swelling. Twice the alarmed babysitter called the clinic, but was told that the symptoms were normal. The third time the babysitter called the clinic, she got no response at all, and summoned an ambulance. Sandra was pronounced dead on arrival at the hospital at 6:01 p.m..

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