Miscarriage Murder?

A new Utah law could criminalize pregnant women who miscarry, meaning they could face murder charges for the loss of an unborn child if their behavior is deemed “reckless.”

A new Utah law could criminalize pregnant women who miscarry, meaning they could face murder charges for the loss of an unborn child if their behavior is deemed "reckless." "The unambiguously named ‘Criminal homicide and abortion amendment’ that passed in the state senate last week seeks to ‘describe the difference between abortion and criminal homicide of an unborn child and to remove prohibitions against prosecution of a woman for killing an unborn child or committing criminal homicide of an unborn child.’ How, you may wonder, is the state of Utah going to separate a woman's legal right to a safe abortion and potentially prosecuting her for murder? Glad you asked! Utah still grants that there's ‘no cause of action for criminal homicide for the death of an unborn child caused by an abortion’ (yes, in Utah, abortion = ‘death of an unborn child’) but would now define criminal homicide to include behavior that ‘intentionally, knowingly, recklessly, with criminal negligence, or acting with a mental state otherwise specified in the statute defining the offense, causes the death of another human being, including an unborn child at any stage of its development.’ Key words there are ‘recklessly,’ ‘unborn child’ and ‘at any stage.’ In other words, if you're not being a fully responsible baby incubator – even if you're so early along you don't know you're pregnant -- and you lose the fetus, you could potentially find yourself up on a murder charge."

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