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woman sentenced to 8 years for 38-week home abortion

(509 Posts)
WokingOnSunshine Mon 17-Sep-12 12:57:04

www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-york-north-yorkshire-19621675
www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2204471/Mother-Sarah-Catt-terminated-baby-week-date-using-medication.html

BlackberryIce Mon 17-Sep-12 13:02:31

Christ! I have no words!

NoToastWithoutKnickers Mon 17-Sep-12 13:06:46

shock sad

FireOverBabylon Mon 17-Sep-12 13:07:18

I was going to start a thread on this when I saw your's. I know that what she did was wrong but 8 years in jail? And how would you even begin to source abortion inducing mediciation over the internet?

WokingOnSunshine Mon 17-Sep-12 13:08:11

Previous story/background: www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2180019/A-seemingly-perfect-marriage-Two-beloved-children-A-drug-bought-online-And-terrible-question--What-mother-secretly-abort-baby-week-due.html

JaxTellerIsMyFriend Mon 17-Sep-12 13:08:15

How could she be prosecuted for something when there is no evidence of a pregnancy or a dead baby? It just seems bizarre.

What if she just made it all up?

BlackberryIce Mon 17-Sep-12 13:08:20

You think 8 years is too much? Too little?

littleducks Mon 17-Sep-12 13:08:46

I think she deserves the sentence and feel desperately sorry for her husband who apparently had no idea.

Geordieminx Mon 17-Sep-12 13:11:21

I don't understand why she waited until 39 weeks.

IMO she deserves 8 years.

Although again I think it very strange that they have passed sentence with no "proof" sad

littleducks Mon 17-Sep-12 13:15:09

The second link is actually nailing me question myself, it seems totally bizarre......the baby still could be Alice somewhere???

She plead guilty so I suppose can be sentenced, she just gave no details

WokingOnSunshine Mon 17-Sep-12 13:15:40

Seems like it's very easy:

www.iwhc.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=3747&Itemid=614
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Misoprostol

I don't really understand how abortion is done, but it would appear that it induces labour, which would mean the baby would have been born alive, as causing uterine contractions is just an induction, which at that stage of course would be a fully formed baby.

More detail here: www.medicationabortion.com/misoprostol/index.html

I couldn't really see what effect it would have at full term, unless she had previously taken another drug to kill the baby.

I would have thought a live birth the most likely scenario though?

WokingOnSunshine Mon 17-Sep-12 13:17:07

and yes if the baby was born live and she previously had a live born child adopted, maybe she gave it away?

With her refusing to give the location of the grave, then I guess it's impossible to say.

LunaticFringe Mon 17-Sep-12 13:18:32

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DowntonTrout Mon 17-Sep-12 13:30:10

It said on the news just now that the pregnancy was confirmed at 20-some weeks. When there was no further sign of a baby being born it was flagged up by the health professionals.

She was found to have procured the abortion drugs on the Internet and aborted the baby at 39/40 weeks. She then is said to have burried the body.

That obviously doesn't include all the details. I think it is just dreadfully sad that someone would feel driven to do that. I would imagine she needs psychiatric help, not jail.

duchesse Mon 17-Sep-12 13:31:00

I've said it before and I'll say it again. This case and subsequent conviction is on very shaky legal ground. Assuming that is what she did, is it actually illegal to terminate one's own pregnancy past the legal stage? Has that actually been enshrined in law? It is illegal for someone to procure a termination at that stage on someone else, but on oneself I am not so sure.

Yes it is an odd story but people are very surprising sometimes. It is entirely possible that this child is alive and well somewhere.

BlackberryIce Mon 17-Sep-12 13:35:18

The judge said it lies somewhere between murder and manslaughter. Dud the baby take a breath? Cry? We will never know

Why do you think she needs psychiatric help? It's a bad thing, but why assume she is mentally ill?

BlackberryIce Mon 17-Sep-12 13:36:06

duchesse you have said it before? So this has happened before ?

EldritchCleavage Mon 17-Sep-12 13:36:34

Yes it is illegal to procure your own abortion. Abortion is only legal in the clearly prescribed circumstances set out in the Abortion Act.

It sounds as though they know there was a pregnancy, they know she bought the drug on the internet and when, and she has made a number of admissions. She sounds as though she's got huge problems with pregnancy, to put it mildly.

ElephantsAndMiasmas Mon 17-Sep-12 13:37:21

I don't feel that she should have been sentenced to prison at all, it's her body and the baby is in it, obviously it's really sad but I just can't think of it as criminal. I'd suspect that she's not particularly well in her mind though.

meditrina Mon 17-Sep-12 13:39:38

According to BBC news there is a record of her being scanned at about 29 weeks and there was a viable pregnancy.

Information about her subsequent actions appear to have come from analysis of her computer and Internet activity.

BlackberryIce Mon 17-Sep-12 13:39:43

It may have been criminal if the baby wasn't actually stillborn

BlackberryIce Mon 17-Sep-12 13:41:32

Maybe her sentence would have been different had she shared location of the body? And she has offered no explanation it expressed remorse

She is one cold woman!!

duchesse Mon 17-Sep-12 13:42:32

No, about this case before, but possibly in the feminism topic where it was debated a few weeks ago.

WokingOnSunshine Mon 17-Sep-12 13:44:39

Relevant offences, under the Offences Against the Persons Act 1861:

"Every woman, being with child, who, with intent to procure her own miscarriage, shall unlawfully administer to herself any poison or other noxious thing, or shall unlawfully use any instrument or other means whatsoever with the like intent, and whosoever, with intent to procure the miscarriage of any woman, whether she be or be not with child, shall unlawfully administer to her or cause to be taken by her any poison or other noxious thing, or shall unlawfully use any instrument or other means whatsoever with the like intent, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable . . . to be kept in penal servitude for life . ."

"Whosoever shall unlawfully supply or procure any poison or other noxious thing, or any instrument or thing whatsoever, knowing that the same is intended to be unlawfully used or employed with intent to procure the miscarriage of any woman, whether she be or be not with child, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable . . . to be kept in penal servitude . ."

The only defence to the above is under the Abortion Act 1967 by a Medical Practitioner.

Also relevant:
"If any woman shall be delivered of a child, every person who shall, by any secret disposition of the dead body of the said child, whether such child died before, at, or after its birth, endeavour to conceal the birth thereof, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be imprisoned for any term not exceeding two years"

WokingOnSunshine Mon 17-Sep-12 13:45:33

So it was criminal even if stillborn and no drugs were used, to conceal the birth.

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