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Aborted Fetal Remains in D.C. Suggest Infanticide May Have Occurred

AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo

Content Warning: This article includes links that direct to graphic imagery of babies aborted late in pregnancy. 

Last week, it was revealed that the remains of babies aborted particularly late into pregnancy, were found in the D.C. home of pro-life activist Lauren Handy, the director of activism at Progressive Anti-Abortion Uprising (PAAU). Handy is a defendant in an unrelated incident in which she is accused of having "forcefully entered" an abortion facility. 


According to a report from local news outlet, WUSA9, which was on location at the time:

According to an indictment - the nine - including two northern Virginia residents - "forcefully entered the clinic" and chained themselves to fixtures inside. 

WUSA9 has learned one of those indicted - Lauren Handy - lived at the 6th St Southeast DC rowhouse DC Police raided.

All nine now face federal charges of intimidating employees and a patient -- and preventing patients from receiving reproductive health services.

When speaking about the DC Police raid, Lauren Handy told WUSA9 outside her home that as an anti-abortion activist, she expected Wednesday’s events to “happen sooner or later.” She declined to explain the evidence DC Police took from her home while she was being questioned at the FBI’s Washington Field Office, only to explain that “people would freak out when they heard.” Handy declined to speak on camera.

Nine anti-abortion activists were indicted on federal felony charges for blocking the entrance to a D.C. clinic in October 2020.

PAAU also tweeted a press release. It mentions that "one of the defendants privately arranged for the Washington, D.C. Police homicide unit to pick up five recently-discovered bodies of aborted babies for forensic examination." These babies' "late gestational ages and their apparent sustained injuries suggested possible violations of the federal Partial Birth Abortion Act and the Born Alive Infants Protection Act. These babies were given to police based on the suspicion of these violations."


The police remain more so concerned with the pro-life activists, though.

According to Bruce Leshan, of WUSA9:

The activists claim the fetuses were from late-term abortions and say they alerted MPD that they were there. Police, however, say the fetuses appear to have been aborted "in accordance with DC law" and do not see anything illegal with that aspect. 

Police on March 30 said that based on examination of the remains, there doesn't appear to be anything illegal with how the fetuses were aborted, but didn't explain why they were in Handy's home. 

"There doesn't appear to be anything criminal in nature regarding that (method of abortion). Except for how they got into that house. And so we're continuing to look at that," said Executive Assistant Police Chief Ashan Benedict. 

Anti-abortion activists have focused for years on a DC ob/gyn at Washington Surgi-Center. A group called LiveAction.org even secretly recorded the doctor talking about what the doctor would do if an aborted baby was delivered alive.

Such reporting does not address how the methods could indicate infanticide in which the babies were born alive and then left to die or killed, or aborted using the partial-birth abortion procedure, which would be in violation of federal law. 

That method is illegal, thanks to the Partial Birth Abortion Ban, which then President George W. Bush signed into law in 2003. In 2007, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the ban in Gonzales v. Carhart. 


Leshan does also not share what it is that the doctor at that abortion facility, Dr. Cesare Santangelo, admitted to, which is documented in Live Action's 2013 "Inhuman" investigation. 

PAAU held naming ceremonies and funeral services for these aborted babies.

Coverage from Sam Dorman for Live Action News contains very graphic images of those aborted babies. Live Action's president and founder, Lila Rose, also tweeted such images. These links direct to those graphic images. 

The following statement from Live Action has links to those images, but does not itself contain them:

Every day in America, an average of 2,363 children are killed by the violence of abortion. Many of these babies are already considered full-term and able to live independently outside of their mothers. Washington D.C. has one of the least restrictive abortion laws in the country.  

Dr. Robin Pierucci, a neonatal specialist, said in response to viewing the photos, “I can say with confidence that these babies died at an age when they were viable, premature people.”

Dr. Kathi Aultman, retired board-certified OBGYN and former abortionist, reviewed photos and video of the abortion victims and observed the following: “Baby Boy #1 appears to be in the 3rd trimester near term and looks like he should have been in the nursery. He is totally intact, but his skin is somewhat macerated. He appears to be completely normal and was probably aborted using the induction method, which uses medication to induce labor. He looks about the same size as my granddaughter when she was born.” 

Dr. Aultman continued, “Baby Girl #1 appears to be in the late 2nd or early 3rd trimester. She appears intact and completely normal except for trauma to the neck. There appears to be an incision at the base of the skull, and the head has been decompressed. If the baby was alive at the start of this procedure, it would be considered a Partial-Birth Abortion and would be illegal. She is larger than most of the babies I cared for in the NICU, and if the abortion hadn’t killed her, she would have had a decent chance of survival at this gestational age and size.”

Additional photos and video footage show what is considered a well-developed baby in the fetal position and encased by his or her amniotic sac.

Dr. Aultman comments, “It is difficult to discern the gestational age, but this baby is probably in the late 2nd or early 3rd trimester. An induction method would have been used for the abortion. Unless this baby was injected with a drug designed to kill prior to the abortion, he or she may very well have been born alive and then left to die. Without rupturing the amniotic sac, it would not have been possible to cut the cord to cause fetal death before the abortion.”


As the statement mentions, D.C. indeed "has one of the least restrictive abortion laws in the country. " In fact, it has no gestational limit, and a woman does not need a reason to have an abortion up until birth. 

Rose also released a statement on Sunday, in light of D.C. refusing to conduct autopsies:

“The Washington DC police department and the District’s medical examiner must conduct a thorough forensic medical examination of five dead children discovered outside a DC abortion clinic, to determine their manner of death. Anything less is a dereliction of their duty. Conducting autopsies for these children is the absolute minimum required to ensure that federal and state laws were not violated in their deaths.

Live Action will pay every cent of the cost for an independent neonatal pathologist to do the job if the DC Chief Medical Examiner refuses to examine the bodies of these children. Our experts indicate that a federal crime violating the Born Alive Infant Protection Act or the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act may have been committed upon some of these children. We will settle for nothing less than complete justice for the five.” 

PAAU has indicated they will give a press conference on Tuesday at 11:30am to share more details. 

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