Cold-Blooded Child Murder and the Loophole

I warn you, this story is very disturbing.

In Virginia, a mother gave birth to her baby and then suffocated it. Virginia law enforcement is powerless to charge her. As Investigator Tracy Emerson put it:
"In the state of Virginia, as long as the umbilical cord is attached and [the] placenta is still in the mother, if the baby comes out alive, the mother can do whatever she wants to that baby to kill it," Emerson reports. "She can shoot the baby, stab the baby or anything as long as it is still attached to her in some form by umbilical cord or something, and it's no crime in the state of Virginia."

This not the first time that this has happened in Virginia, but the abortion lobby has legislators too scared to act. As long as the baby is "attached" to the mother and it is not a person.

This case highlights the abhorrent absurdity of defining down "personhood" to protect abortion. The abortion lobby will let many more babies die this way rather than enter the discussion on when the baby becomes a person.

Terrible are the wages of sin.

tip to Kristen.


  1. This law doesn't make sense. In S. Court case Carhart v. Gonzales (I wrote about it here), it was an anatomical (sp) landmark on the baby (being outside the mother) and intent that were the factors deciding legal personhood, not any (cord) connection to the mother (at the landmark the cord is usually still attached).


  2. We are living in very dark times, indeed. May God have mercy.

  3. This is so absurd. Don't we have enough thinkers and lawyers who can make the case for personhood? Is there not enough humanity and compassion in our hearts to just look the other way and have the abortion industry have its way even to the point of defining who is human. IMHO, this is just as atrocious if not more than genocides. From where shall come our help?

  4. Except this story HAS inspired new legislation which is anticipated to be signed next year.


    I agree with Va. State Sen. Newman's statement:

    "Clearly, this is a glaring and horrific problem with the current code of Virginia and we've put in a bill now that will cure this problem," Senator Newman said.

  5. How dare they call such a person by the title "Mother". God have mercy on us all... :-(

  6. As a Virginian, I'd LOVE to hear how the pro-death lobby defends this one. Absolutely sick!

  7. What I don't get is why pro-aborts feign horror. They're okay with the exact same baby being delivered feet first and having its brains sucked out while its head is still partially in the birth canal. What's the big difference? So the baby slides out another inch or two and suddenly everything changes?

    The intellectual dishonesty is seriously disturbing.

  8. "What's the big difference?" -Katie

    The S. Court (majority) asked the same thing.

    From Gonzales v. Carhart (I have the parties reversed above):

    "It is objected that the standard D&E is in some respects as brutal, if not more, than the intact D&E, so that the legislation accomplishes little. What we have already said, however, shows ample justification for the regulation. Partial-birth abortion, as defined by the Act, differs from a standard D&E because the former occurs when the fetus is partially outside the mother to the point of one of the Act's anatomical landmarks. It was reasonable for Congress to think that partial-birth abortion, more than standard D&E, 'undermines the public's perception of the appropriate role of a physician during the delivery process, and perverts a process during which life is brought into the world.'…There would be a flaw in this Court's logic, and an irony in its jurisprudence, were we first to conclude a ban on both D&E and intact D&E was overbroad and then to say it is irrational to ban only intact D&E because that does not proscribe both procedures. In sum, we reject the contention that the congressional purpose of the Act was 'to place a substantial obstacle in the path of a woman seeking an abortion.'" (op, p. 30)

    "The objection that the Act accomplishes little because the standard D&E is in some respects as brutal, if not more, than intact D&E, is unpersuasive. It was reasonable for Congress to think that partial-birth abortion, more than standard D&E, undermines the public's perception of the doctor's appropriate role during delivery, and perverts the birth process." (syl, p. 6)

    "Today, the Court blurs that line, maintaining that '[t]he Act [legitimately] appl[ies] both previability and postviability because . . . a fetus is a living organism while within the womb, whether or not it is viable outside the womb.' Ante, at 17. Instead of drawing the line at viability, the Court refers to Congress' purpose to differentiate 'abortion and infanticide' based not on whether a fetus can survive outside the womb, but on where a fetus is anatomically located when a particular medical procedure is performed.). One wonders how long a line that saves no fetus from destruction will hold in face of the Court's 'moral concerns.'" (dis, p. 19)

    "The Act's ban on abortions that involve partial delivery of a living fetus furthers the Government's objectives. No one would dispute that, for many, D&E is a procedure itself laden with the power to devalue human life. Congress could nonetheless conclude that the type of abortion proscribed by the Act requires specific regulation because it implicates additional ethical and moral concerns that justify a special prohibition. Congress determined that the abortion methods it proscribed had a "disturbing similarity to the killing of a newborn infant," … and thus it was concerned with "draw[ing] a bright line that clearly distinguishes abortion and infanticide." …. The Court has in the past confirmed the validity of drawing boundaries to prevent certain practices that extinguish life and are close to actions that are condemned. Glucksberg found reasonable the State's "fear that permitting assisted suicide will start it down the path to voluntary and perhaps even involuntary euthanasia."" (op, p. 28)


  9. Kyrie Eleyson. This underscores the fact that views, understanding and knowledge about human anatomy and fetal developement have evolved DRASTICALLY since even the 1970's. Unfortunately our codified legality and societal morality has yet to follow suit.

  10. The fruit of abortion is NUCLEAR WAR.
    Blessed Mother Teresa

    I guess the Nobel Peace Prize goes to the most avid adocate of worldwide nuclear holocaust.

  11. If committed by another person, such an act is "partial birth infanticide" under Va. Code § 18.2-71.1. So, personhood is not at issue.

    However, § 18.2-71.1(F) specifically excludes the mother -- "The mother may not be prosecuted for any criminal offense based on the performance of any act or procedure by a physician in violation of this section."

  12. Can we find the woman's 20 year old umbilical cord and beat her with it?

  13. Finally, a crime so horrible, Craig can only say "But we're fixing the loophole!"

  14. Kind of like the loophole state Senator Obama refused to close to stop infanticide. Liberalism is a world view that oppresses children born and now newly born.

  15. Flexo,

    I don't think Va.Code § 18.2-71.1 is the problem. Instead, its Va.Code § 18.2-32.2

    "A. Any person who unlawfully, willfully, deliberately, maliciously and with premeditation kills the fetus of another is guilty of a Class 2 felony."

    "B. Any person who unlawfully, willfully, deliberately and maliciously kills the fetus of another is guilty of a felony punishable by confinement in a state correctional facility for not less than five nor more than 40 years."

    The problem is the phrase "the fetus of another" which excludes the mother.

    I sent an expanded explanation of this, with supporting links to Ed over at Hot Air, and he's updated his blog entry to include the info I sent.

    Dave in Reno

  16. Dave, the problem with your analysis is that a child outside the womb is NOT a "fetus," but a child, the killing of which is infanticide under Virginia law, namely, § 18.2-71.1.



  18. Flexo, I understand what you're saying about § 18.2-71.1, and I agree with you in general, but something is obviously preventing the prosecution of the mother, and it is most likely the wording of § 18.2-32.2, because that is the section of the law that they tried and faild to change in 2006 -2007.

    I'll leave it to you to go through all of the links on that page, but I believe that this statement from the Fiscal Impact statement is key:

    "The proposal amends § 18.2-32.2, which prescribes penalties for killing a fetus. Under the proposal, language defining the crime is changed from “killing the fetus of another” to “killing a fetus.” Presumably, this change could allow the woman carrying the fetus to be prosecuted under this statute."

    It was noted by Megan Kelly of News (who's also a lawyer,) that the original language may have been designed to protect mothers who delivered stillborn babies while alone.


  19. This is an abhorrent act, but no more abhorrent than any abortion. I understand that it affects us more viscerally, but when we act like this is more disgusting than any other abortion, we inherently buy into the pro aborts logic that there is some point at which the life of a baby is more important than at other points.

  20. Babies are the fruit of the womb - They must be loved and protected at all costs.

  21. Hmmm, seems like Virginia abortionists can now do their job a little easier...just induce labor and deliver the live baby, then kill it while the cord is still attached. Less complicated for the abortionists, no need to worry that a baby might somehow get all the way out with the audacity to still have a heartbeat or daring to take a first breath. No need to worry about that in Virginia.

    The legal killing of newborns has been brewing for many years in some parts of the world, including recommendations by "doctors" in the Netherlands that babies could be killed up to a month after birth if the baby has some sort of problem, and the decision would be made by doctors judging the baby's quality of life.

  22. Julie,

    I must point out that the language of the VA code says that the one (person) "killing the fetus of another" is (still) to be prosecuted under the code. If one other than the woman induces labor and kills the baby while s/he is still attached by the cord ot the mother, the act is still not legal.

  23. It's things like this that make me believe in 2012. No pun intended.

  24. I found this article (from the alluded-to 2006 case) from Associated Content. It may shed some light on what investigators were thinking when they said they could not prosecute this woman:

    According to the Virginia-Pilot, Skinner, now 23, was "charged in Circuit Court with producing an abortion or miscarriage, a felony charge that her attorney argues cannot be used to prosecute a woman who ends her own pregnancy."

    A lower court judge had already thrown out a charge of producing an abortion against Skinner, concluding that the law was not aimed at pregnant mothers who harm themselves or their yet-to-be born children...Circuit Court Judge Westbrook Parker heard arguments in Skinner's case, including a motion to dismiss the case, and decided to drop the felony charge against Tammy Skinner, effectively ending all prosecution..."


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