Judge Upholds Order to Close Haskell’s Cincinnati Area Abortion Facility

This news is just in: Late-term abortionist Martin Haskell has lost a bid to overturn an Ohio Health Department order to close his facility because it does not meet minimum requirements for licensure. Below is a release from Greater Cincinnati Right to Life, which has been working with Operation Rescue to expose wrongdoing at that facility and close it down.

“Today is a victory for the rule of law and for women and their babies who have been subjected to practices that endanger them,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman. “We hope that Haskell will respect the law and shut down his illegal abortion business. If he doesn’t, we pan to continue to work within the laws of Ohio to bring his dangerous abortion practice to an end.”

Read background information from Operation Rescue
Statement from Greater Cincinnati Right to Life:

August 15, 2014 (Cincinnati, OH): Today Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas Judge Jerry Metz heard arguments from lawyers for abortionist Martin Haskell and the Attorney General on Lebanon Road Surgery Center vs. State of Ohio Department of Health.


Judge Metz concurred with Magistrate Michael Bachman and upheld the Ohio Department of Health’s January 2014 order to close the Sharonville, Ohio Lebanon Road Surgery Center (aka Women’s Med Center), for failing to have a written transfer agreement with a local hospital or a variance, i.e., exception, to cover patient emergencies.

Judge Metz also did not extend the stay of execution he approved for the abortion facility during the appeal process. This stay expires in five days.

Upon today’s decision, the case will no longer be heard in the Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas, but Women’s Med Center attorneys may possibly appeal to the First Appellate District Court of Appeals.

Next Steps:

If the Women’s Med Center does not appeal to the First Appellate District Court of Appeals, the Women’s Med Center will be closed.

If the Women’s Med Center does appeal to the First Appellate District Court of Appeals within the next five days and obtains a stay of execution, it will seamlessly stay open. Or it could appeal to this court and seek and obtain a stay later.

“Judge Metz has now protected women’s health and safety by enforcing lawful medical safety requirements,” said Paula Westwood, Executive Director, Right to Life of Greater Cincinnati. “We are cautiously optimistic, as we do not know whether Martin Haskell will appeal to the next court.”

Tuesday, August 12th, NARAL filed a lawsuit on behalf of the Women’s Med Center against the Ohio Department of Health, disputing ODH variance requirements. The lawsuit came just days before today’s hearing, as is still pending.

Abortionist Involved in Patient Death Receives Inadequate Discipline to Protect the Public

By Cheryl Sullenger

Baltimore, MD — It was during an inspection conducted by the Maryland Department of Health on February 20, 2013, when it was discovered that patient Maria Santiago, 38, died during a 13-week abortion at the run-down Associates in OB/GYN Care, located on Baltimore’s Cheverly Road – shockingly situated inside a residential condominium complex.

Three Maryland abortionists who worked at the seedy Baltimore clinic owned by the notorious late-term abortionist Steven Chase Brigham have received further discipline, but disturbingly, the one directly responsible for the abortion-related fatality has received the lightest sanctions.

The abortionists Iris Dominy, Michael Basco, and Mansour Panah, were each involved in Brigham’s Baltimore Associates in OB/GYN Care abortion operation, which, along with three other affiliates, were closed last year by the state due to repeated violations that endangered the safety of women.

Maria Santiago’s Death

Abortionist Iris Dominy told a State inspector that the sedated Santiago had slept throughout her abortion. According to the deficiency report issued after the inspection, Dominy completed the abortion on the sleeping woman, then left the room. An unqualified worker was left alone with the patient. That worker occupied herself with filling out paperwork while the patient remained on the abortion table.

Sometime later, the worker called for a second employee to help her dress the unconscious Santiago and move her to the recovery area. The second worker noticed that Santiago was pale and not breathing. Dominy was notified and returned to the procedure room where she sat the unconscious Santiago up and began a “sternum rub” instead of standard Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation. No one at the clinic, including Dominy, had current CPR certification. A crash cart in the hallway was not used and the defibrillator was broken.

Police report taken at the time of Santiago’s death. Click to view full document.

Operation Rescue recently obtained documents showing that on October 15, 2013, the Maryland Board of Physicians (MDBP) issued only a reprimand to Dominy for negligence that resulted in Santiago’s death. Dominy was placed on probation only until 16 hours of continuing education classes in sedation and monitoring can be taken and verified. Dominy is also prohibited from administering sedation until the Board issues its specific approval, but is otherwise able to continue practicing medicine.

“Considering that Dominy’s negligence cost one woman her life, a simple reprimand is completely inadequate. This just sends the message to abortion abusers that if they kill a woman during an abortion, it’s no big deal,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman. “But on the other hand, it is more discipline than LeRoy Carhart received for inflicting a fatal 33-week abortion on Jennifer Morbelli last year in Germantown. It is troubling how the Maryland Board of Physicians seems to shrug off abortion-related deaths as if the lives of these women mean nothing.”

Meanwhile, Dominy’s two associates fared somewhat worse with the MDBP.

Panah’s License Suspended

Mansour Panah served as the Medical Director for Brigham’s now-shuttered Maryland abortion clinics and oversaw patient care. Initially, Panah’s medical license was suspended upon discovery of the dangerous conditions at Associates in OB/GYN Care, but his license was later reinstated. It was only when Panah failed to appear at his disciplinary hearing held on October 25, 2013, that the MDBP determined that the “public health, safety, or welfare imperatively required” that Panah’s license be summarily suspended — for the third time in his career — according to records recently obtained by Operation Rescue.

Basco Barred in Four States

Documents acquired recently by Operation Rescue show that third abortionist, Michael Basco, who also worked for Brigham’s Associates in OB/GYN Care in Maryland, has had his medical licenses suspended in California, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. pending the outcome of charges filed against him by the MDBP in July 2013. Operation Rescue had discovered that Basco was continuing to do abortions in Washington, D.C. after his Maryland license suspension and immediately notified D.C.’s medical board of Basco’s Maryland charges.

Basco’s license in Maryland remains under suspension pending a final disposition of his case. Basco is accused of operating in conditions that violated health and safety standards and for allowing an unlicensed, unqualified worker to administer abortion drugs outside Basco’s presence to a woman he had never seen. After the abortion drugs were administered, Basco discovered the woman was 22 weeks pregnant with twins. Even though her abortion had already started, he refused to continue the procedure and essentially turned her adrift without any plan of action. The woman later submitted to a surgical abortion at another clinic unrelated to Brigham’s abortion business.

“Anything less that total revocation of his medical license is unacceptable and would leave women’s lives at risk,” said Newman.

Ineffectual Reprimand

With the license suspensions of Panah and Basco, it is ironic that the abortionist directly responsible for the death of Maria Santiago, Iris Dominy, remains the only one of Brigham’s former Maryland abortionists that can still practice medicine.

Factor in that late-term abortionist LeRoy Carhart received no discipline whatsoever from the MDBP after his abandonment of Jennifer Morbelli delayed her access to emergency medical care, and it is easy to conclude that killing abortion patients is not a serious matter in Maryland. This does not sit well with Operation Rescue’s Newman.

“It doesn’t make sense that one abortionist who failed to show up for a hearing is considered more of a public threat than abortionists who are responsible for killing women. It sends the wrong message to abortion cartel and lacks any deterrent value,” said Newman. “The Board has created a climate that guarantees more women will die from abortions in Maryland, and that runs counter to the duty of the Board to protect the public – not dangerous abortionists.”

Head of the Snake

Adding to the injustice is the fact that Dominy, Panah and Basco’s employer, Steven Chase Brigham, has completely escaped accountability for his fatal abortion business in Maryland. Since Brigham has never been licensed in Maryland, he is outside the MDBP’s authority to discipline.

In 2010, Brigham was caught operating an illegal, secret late-term abortion clinic in Elkton, Maryland, after a patient nearly died from a perforated uterus and pulled bowel during a late-term abortion that had been illegal started in New Jersey and continued in Maryland. The MDBP issued Brigham a letter ordering him to cease and desist the unlicensed practice of medicine in Maryland. He was later charged with murder after police raided his Elkton clinic and discovered the bodies of 35 late-term aborted babies stored in a blood-soaked freezer. Regrettably, those charges were soon dropped after an expert witness withdrew from the case.

The MDBP did revoke the license of Brigham’s Elkton associate, Nicola Riley, but that decision was not enough to convince her home state of Utah to take similar action. Riley continues to practice in Utah today.

Brigham once held licenses in California, Florida, Georgia, Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey. His New York license was revoked in 1994 after a series of horrifically botched abortions, and he either surrendered the remaining licenses (except in his home state of New Jersey) under threat of revocation or allowed them to expire. In New Jersey, Brigham’s sole remaining medical license remains under suspension. He faces multiple charges related to illegal abortions and deception, having submitted phony malpractice insurance documents to the state when in fact he was operating illegally without insurance.

But it is doubtful that even license revocation would end Brigham’s abortion career or close his clinics.

“Brigham has been able to successfully navigate within shadowy regulatory gaps to keep his shoddy abortion chain open and exploiting vulnerable women even though he no longer holds an active medical license in any state,” said Newman. “He does it through a series of shell companies operated in the names of his relatives. Brigham and the motley crew of abortionists Brigham employs have proven to be the bottom of the barrel, even among abortion providers. There is no way any of his abortion clinics should be allowed to stay open. The fact that they are shows how effectively he is able to manipulate the system, even while under the burden of a mountain of legal troubles.”

While some states are starting to see through Brigham’s scams, he continues to operate a chain of 9 abortion clinics in New Jersey and Virginia. All abortion clinics even remotely related to him were shut down by authorities in Maryland and Pennsylvania. Nearly all the abortionists Brigham has had working for him have their own sordid histories of discipline, as detailed previously by Operation Rescue in an article published in November 2010.

Regulators Fall Short

However, often the reach of regulatory agencies falls short. In those cases, new laws with stiff criminal penalties may be the only solution to protecting the public. Abortionists that have had medical licenses revoked should not be allowed to hold interests in abortion businesses. Abortionists who operate illegally or deceptively should be jailed. Those who injure or kill patients should not be given second, third, and fourth chances. Licenses should be revoked and criminal penalties imposed in order to ensure that more women do not die. Enforcement duties should be turned over to the offices of local criminal prosecutors more often.

“Brigham is the kind of man that never seems to learn his lesson from traditional discipline, except how to avoid getting caught the next time. In a lot of ways, ineffective discipline has only made him sneakier and more dangerous,” said Newman. “He has trained his associates to be just as negligent and crooked as he is. A good long stint in jail for him and his cohorts, such as Dominy, Panah, and Basco, who have engaged in gross abortion abuses resulting in patient injury or death, may be the only way to stop their incompetent and dangerous abortion practices from inflicting more human misery on the world.”

Troy’s Blog: Now You Can Close the Abortion Clinic

By Troy Newman

In a “Wonderful Life” every time a bell rang an angel got his wings, but at Operation Rescue, when an abortion mill shuts its doors we rock out. “Another One Bites the Dust” by the rock group Queen blares at maximum volume from our office stereo system every time an abortion mill closes. It is a time honored tradition in the Operation Rescue office dating back to 1991.

The OR national headquarters is located in former abortion mill. The rock and roll could be heard for blocks away on the day we shut down that clinic down.

Fortunately, the music is digital or we would have worn the old vinyl record thin from celebrating all the abortion clinics that have lately closed. Since 1991, over 1,400 chop shops have shut down for good leaving just slightly over 700 killing centers in the USA. The numbers don’t lie. Two-thirds of the industry has closed up shop and blown out of town. That’s something to rock about!

And the winds of change continue to blow in our favor.

In the years since the 1992 Planned Parenthood vs. Casey Supreme Court decision, the push from state legislatures has been to focus on placing restrictions and regulations on abortion mills and their staff. Although the attempts have been piecemeal, many laws have been enacted and enforced resulting in the closure of clinics in several states.

A few years ago, the Missouri legislature passed a common-sense safety law forcing abortionists to have hospital privileges in order to stay open. As a result, at least one abortion clinic was closed, and our stereo blasted at full volume.

Kermit Gosnell’s license to kill was suspended by the Pennsylvania Department of State’s Board of Medicine after they raided his death camp and declared it a “shop of horrors” after finding numerous health and safety violations. His abortion mill was ordered to close. Another one down.

Maryland regulators are finally stepping up to the plate after an 18-year old girl suffered a botched abortion at the hands of the unlicensed abortionist Steven Brigham. The state ordered Brigham to cease and desist from the practice of medicine and suspended the licenses of his two quack associates for helping Brigham evade the law. Operation Rescue is pushing the Maryland Attorney General for criminal charges. Brigham’s Elkton abortion mill is closed. Yet another one down.

The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals (LDHH) revoked the clinic license of Hope Medical Group for Women in Shreveport last week and ordered them to halt all abortions there after finding that they didn’t even bother to monitor a patient’s vital signs or physically examine women prior to abortions. The action was the first immediate suspension under the new Louisiana law, signed by Governor Bobby Jindel, which allows the State to order an abortion mill to cease operations. Another one bites the dust.

Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli recently placed abortion mills under the same standard of care required by other outpatient surgical facilities. Abortion mills around the country often operate in a gray area and outside any regulatory oversight. I predict there will be some “for sale” signs going up soon in Virginia, and I better warm up my stereo.

Laws and regulations that end with “now you can close the abortion clinic” are always a good thing for the babies. I know from first-hand experience that when abortion mills close, babies are saved.

So long live the regulators, the enforcers, and the prosecutors who apply the law and close abortion mills. We can all hold hands and sing the refrain, “bump, bump, bump, another one bites the dust!”