A horrific case has emerged in Florida that may unleash a new round of legislative demands on restrictions of abortion clinics, a continual point of contention in the state. According to media reports, Sycloria Williams, 18, went to an abortion clinic outside of Miami and paid $1200 for an abortion. However, the 23-week baby was reportedly delivered live and simply thrown into a trash bag. The case has caused attention on the background and questionable skills of Dr. Pierre Jean-Jacque Renelique. The case has both challenging civil and criminal questions.
The problems began when Williams was giving drugs to dilate her cervix but Renelique arrived late. Before he did, Williams delivered a live baby girl.
Witnesses say that an unlicensed clinic owner cut the unbilical cord and threw out the baby in the trash. Williams said that Belkis Gonzalez actually knocked the baby to the floor from a stool and caused massive bleeding before it was scooped up and thrown into a trash bag.
Williams is now suing, which raises a novel wrongful death claim. Even though Williams did not want the baby to live, she would still have a claim as the mother when it lived by accident. Nevertheless, there seems a powerful case for negligent infliction of emotional distress, negligence, and other claims. Since the baby was live, there are questions of abuse and even murder.
In the meantime, Renelique’s license is being review — as is his history of malpractice. Renelique received his medical training at the State University of Haiti. In 1991, he completed a four-year residency in obstetrics and gynecology at Interfaith Medical Center in New York.
There have been no criminal charges filed, though they are reportedly under consideration.
Both pro-choice and pro-life advocates have expressed horror at the account. However, it is likely to be a case cited by pro-life advocates for decades to come.
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