Tuesday, April 06, 2010

1969: Back alley death in Colorado

On April 6, 1969, 35-year-old Mrs. Catherine L. Barnard of Arvada, Colorado, died of a botched criminal abortion.

Dr. Virgil Jobe, who was later also charged with performing an abortion on a 17-year-old Oklahoma girl, was convicted in Catherine's death.

He was sentenced to five years in prison for the Oklahoma girl's abortion. I have been unable to determine the outcome of any trial over Catherine's death.

Catherine's abortion was typical of criminal abortions in that it was performed by a physician.

In the 1960s, we see the 20th Century downward trend in abortion mortality resumed -- until a brief upturn starting in 1968, when some states first started loosening their abortion laws. For more, see Abortion Deaths in the 1960's.

For more on pre-legalization abortion, see The Bad Old Days of Abortion

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