NAPW's Work

Read About All of Our Legal Advocacy, Public Education, and Organizing Work

Home Abortion Attempt (TN)

Tennessee v. Anna Yocca

Anna Yocca was accused of attempting to terminate her pregnancy at home with a coat hanger. She presented at an emergency department and was admitted to the hospital. Some days later she consented to having cesarean surgery and gave birth to a premature baby.

Woman Prosecuted for Seeking to End Her Own Pregnancy (GA)

Georgia v. Kenlissia Jones

In 2015, Kenlissia Jones was arrested and held without bond in Georgia on the charge of "malice murder" for allegedly using the drug misoprostol to have an abortion at home, outside of a medical setting. After NAPW and local allies spoke out again st the arrest, the County prosecutor concluded that there existed no legal grounds in Georgia for charging a pregnant woman with murder for terminating her own pregnancy (and issued a press release to that effect). While the murder charge against Ms. Jones was dropped and she was released from jail, this occurred only after she had endured the trauma of an arrest, incarceration for several days, and violation of her rights to medical and personal privacy.

Concealing Birth and Abuse of Corpse Charges Based on Taking Labor-Inducing Medication (AR)

Arkansas v. Anne Bynum

NAPW represented Anne Bynum as counsel on her successful direct criminal appeal. In Arkansas, local law enforcement alleged that Ms. Bynum took misoprostol pills to induce an abortion (although in fact she planned to deliver the baby, and had an adoption plan in place) . Her pregnancy ended in a stillbirth late at night while she was in her home . Following the stillbirth, she safeguarded the remains and slept for several hours before helping to get her son ready and off to school.

Criminal Abortion Prosecution (VA)

Commonwealth of Virginia v. Michelle Roberts

In March 2017 the state of Virginia indicted Michelle Roberts for the felony charge of “producing an abortion or miscarriage.” In early 2016 the Chesterfield, Virginia police department obtained a search warrant and found fetal remains buried in Ms. Roberts’s back yard.

Victory in Indiana after NAPW Demands Indiana Prosecutor Drop Murder Charge Against Woman Who Had a Stillbirth at Home (August 2018)

NAPW, along with 11 other organizations and 27 individual experts, submitted an Open Letter to the Madison County, Indiana prosecutor, asking him to drop felony charges against a woman who experienced a stillbirth at home. An Indiana woman who experienced a pregnancy loss is being prosecuted for feticide and involuntary manslaughter, based on her alleged drug use while pregnant.

NAPW Senior Staff Attorney Amber Khan presents on the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) to a New York State Department of Health workgroup

In December 2018, NAPW Senior Staff Attorney Amber Khan delivered a presentation to the AIDS Institute’s state-wide Women Who Use Drugs Workgroup, part of the New York State Department of Health, on the federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) and its connection to pregnancy and drug use.