Saturday, December 06, 2008

Kansas Supreme Court Decides Against Planned Parenthood

County D.A. allowed to retain abortion medical records for prosecution of Planned Parenthood charged with performing illegal late-term abortions and falsifying records

-- From "Despite harsh words, Kline gets to keep abortion records" by Joe Lambe And Laura Bauer, The Kansas City Star 12/5/08

In a 40-page ruling Friday, the Kansas Supreme Court slammed Johnson County District Attorney Phill Kline for his handling of an ongoing abortion case.

But in the end, after justices called Kline’s actions inexcusable and accused him of not having respect for the law, he got what he wanted.

Kline gets to keep medical records of women treated at Planned Parenthood in Overland Park — the basis of his pending 107-count criminal case against the clinic. He only has to provide copies of all investigative materials to the Kansas attorney general. They’re due next Friday.

That means the records will remain at the district attorney’s office and Kline’s successor, Steve Howe, will have them if he continues the case once he takes the helm in January.

Planned Parenthood wanted Kline to relinquish all records and the high court to hold him in contempt and fine him. Attorney General Steve Six said he wanted “any and all” evidence Kline developed during his investigation.

Peter Brownlie, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri, said he was disappointed that the court didn’t order Kline to hand over all the records — only copies — and didn’t hold him in contempt.

The case goes back to 2003 when Kline, then the Kansas attorney general, launched an investigation into the Overland Park clinic and Wichita abortion doctor George Tiller.

He requested, and eventually obtained, medical records — with patient identifiers removed — which he used to file charges against Tiller just before he left office. Those charges later were dismissed.

To read the entire article, CLICK HERE.