Wichita, KS – The Associated Press is reporting this morning that the citizen-called grand jury investigating George R. Tiller for committing illegal late-term abortions has yet to receive a single abortion record even though the Kansas Supreme Court ruled almost a month ago that the subpoenas should be honored.
Fewer than twenty of the subpoenaed abortion records have been turned over to the independent court appointed attorney and physician, who are to further review the records for relevance before finally submitting them to the grand jury.
Originally, about 2,000 late-term abortion records from the past five years were subpoenaed by the grand jury, Judge Paul Buchanan asked Tiller to first provide to a random sample of 50 late-term abortion records per year, for a total of 250 records.
The question remains if the process is moving fast enough for the grand jury to inspect the records and reach any conclusions before their term expires on July 8, 2008. There has already been one three-month extension of time because of the delays but according to statute, there can be no more time provided.
Operation Rescue President Troy Newman testified before the grand jury in January, just two weeks before the original subpoenas were issued. Newman supplied the grand jury with over 200 pages of documentation along with his testimony.
“Every action taken by Tiller’s lawyers has been for the purpose of delay,” said Operation Rescue President. “They delayed the start of the grand jury, they delayed the investigation by filing with the Kansas Supreme Court to stay the subpoenas. They have missed every deadline that we are aware of, always with excuses and requests for further delays.”
“The glacial speed with which they are now providing records casts doubt on whether they are sincerely attempting to comply. Their actions are more consistent with someone who is trying desperately to run out the clock,” said Newman. “It also raises concerns that the scant number records that they are providing may have been hand-selected to insure that nothing with incriminating evidence is ever turned over to the grand jury. No other individual or group would be allowed to hand pick the documents surrendered in a criminal investigation.
“You would think that if Tiller was truly innocent, he would want to make that apparent to this grand jury and clear his name as soon as possible. Instead, he is acting more like a guilty man with something to hide, and his foot-dragging almost insures that he faces the possibility of yet another citizen-called grand jury. That could very well happen if his lack of evidence production is what becomes ultimately responsible for this grand jury’s inability to reach conclusions.”