Macabre discovery in the United States: police find five fetuses in the home of an anti-abortion activist
Steph Deschamps / April 2, 2022
Police discovered five fetuses in a U.S. home believed to belong to an anti-abortion activist, several media outlets reported Friday.
Lauren Handy (28), leader of the group Progressive Anti-Abortion Uprising (PAAU), describes herself as a Catholic anarchist. She was charged Wednesday for allegedly forcing her way into a clinic where abortions were being performed in 2020. Police said they were investigating a potential biohazard material when the fetuses were found.
Ms. Handy was photographed outside the Washington, DC address on Wednesday as investigators pulled bags and coolers from the basement. She told news outlet WUSA-TV that people would panic when they heard what was in the seized containers. A medical examiner will examine the five fetuses.
The Progressive Anti-Abortion Uprising said it would hold a press conference on the incident next week. Local police said they could not confirm whether the house where the fetuses were found was actually Ms. Handy's. However, two law enforcement officials told The Washington Post that the home was where Handy was arrested and where she had lived or stayed. There doesn't appear to be anything criminal about this case, other than the way they got to that house, Ashan Benedict, executive assistant to the Washington, D.C., police chief, said at a news conference.
Ms. Handy recently claimed she accessed a fetal tissue and organ bank at the University of Washington in Seattle, but the university assured that nothing was taken, the BBC reports. According to a separate federal indictment released Thursday, Handy made an appointment at the Washington Surgi-Clinic in Washington for Oct. 22, 2020, under the name Hazel Jenkins, saying she wanted an abortion. But when she arrived, a group forcibly entered the clinic.
Ms. Handy and eight other members of the group are charged with conspiring to injure, oppress, threaten and intimidate patients and employees in violation of their federal rights to seek and provide reproductive health services. They are also charged with violating the law that prohibits any form of violence against the exercise of abortion rights, called the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act (FACE). If convicted, they each face up to 11 years in prison and a fine of up to $350,000.