Alabama Teen Sues Abortion Clinic for the Death of His Preborn Child

By Nancy Flory Published on March 7, 2019

A Madison County, Alabama, teenager is suing an abortion clinic over the death of his preborn child.

Ryan Magers, 19, wanted the child that his girlfriend aborted. Magers’ girlfriend got a medication abortion February 2017 at Alabama Women’s Center for Reproductive Alternatives in Huntsville, Alabama. She was six weeks pregnant. “I just tried to plead with her and plead with her and just talk to her about it and see what I could do, but in the end, there was nothing I could do to change her mind,” Magers said. He added that it was “like my whole world fell apart. … [E]very child from conception is a baby and deserves to live.”

Since Alabama recognizes the “personhood of a fetus,” Magers is suing the abortion clinic on behalf of his aborted baby and himself.

Murder for Profit

Brent Helms, Magers’ attorney, says Baby Roe was killed by the “profiteering” of the abortion clinic. “[W]hile no court will be able to bring Baby Roe back to life, we will seek the fullest extent of justice on behalf of Baby Roe and Baby Roe’s father.” Helms adds that the time is right for consistency in Alabama’s legal system. “Either we fully acknowledge the personhood of the unborn or we cherry pick which innocents we protect and which ones we trash for profit.”

A Victory

Madison County probate court Judge Frank Barger recognized Magers’ aborted baby, “Baby Roe,” as a plaintiff in the suit against the abortion clinic. This is a victory, said Helms. “This is the first estate that I’m aware of that has ever been opened for an aborted baby.” Since an estate only has the right to sue, Magers is suing the clinic on behalf of his preborn child’s estate. According to Helms, state law recognizes that life begins at conception. Because of that, Helms believes the case could reach the Supreme Court. “We are confident, and this is a step in the right direction.”

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Ilyse Hogue is the president of NARAL Pro-Choice America. She tweeted that Magers’ case is scary. “Breaking: Alabama allows a suit from man AND fetus against abortion clinic where his girlfriend terminated her pregnancy. First under Alabama’s new personhood law, asserting woman’s rights third in line. Very scary case.”

Personhood Alabama filed a wrongful death suit on behalf of Baby Roe. Hannah Ford is Personhood Alabama’s spokesperson. She said that Magers’ suit is a “timely reminder that every single abortion committed is a chilling assault on a precious and innocent human life — an intolerable violation of the most basic, God-given human right, the right to life.”

The abortion clinic must respond to the lawsuit by April 1.

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