INJUSTICE: Judge Ignored Kansas Law In Dismissing Tiller Case

Americans need to express outrage over Foulston’s obstruction of justice

By Cheryl Sullenger

Wichita, KS — Yesterday’s rejection of Attorney General Phill Kline’s bid to reinstate 30 criminal charges against abortionist George R. Tiller for illegal late-term abortions and reporting violations has drawn little criticism in Kansas but has created a firestorm of controversy around the nation, including from Fox News “The O’Reilly Factor” program. At the crux of the issue is Judge Paul W. Clark’s total disregard for the statutes of the State of Kansas and District Attorney Nola Foulston’s obvious misrepresentations of Kansas law.

Kasich’s Disbelief

Commentator John Kasich, sitting in for Bill O’Reilly on a program that aired on December 27, expressed disbelief that Judge Clark could rule that a State Attorney General has no authority to file criminal charges in a District Court, when in fact Kansas attorneys general have filed literally thousands of cases in every county.

“This judge is saying if in a county there is illicit, illegal activity going on and the district attorney is part of it — and I’m not saying in this case, but theoretically is part of it — the Attorney General has no power to go after the criminals?” asked Kasich. “That can’t be.”

Kansas Statutes Ignored

Meanwhile, Kline expressed frustration that the Kansas media did not report on the fact that Clark ignored Kansas statutes that clearly give the Attorney General authority to file criminal cases without the consent of the District Attorney.

“Investigations in Kansas often times are conducted by ‘inquisition,’” Kline wrote in an e-mail communication with supporters on Thursday. “The process is similar to a federal ‘grand jury’ except a jury is not called and the investigation is overseen by a judge. An inquisition was opened in this case and thousands of pages of documents, expert witnesses, witness testimony and affidavits have been obtained. The charges filed were supported by the evidence obtained in the inquisition. This evidence prompted Sedgwick County District Court Judge Eric Yost to find probable cause to believe that Mr. Tiller committed the crimes alleged. Of course, Tiller is presumed innocent by law of any charges unless convicted in court.”

The statute Kline referred to is K.S.A. 22-3103: “(i)f the testimony taken at an inquisition discloses probable cause to believe that a crime has been committed…the attorney general…may file such testimony, together with his complaint…against the person or persons alleged to have committed the crime…and a warrant shall there upon be issued for the arrest of such person…as in other criminal cases.” (emphasis added).

“This law reads very clear,” said Kline.

Judicial Cowardice?

Operation Rescue President Troy Newman, who was present during Wednesday’s hearing made the following observations: “It was obvious to me that Judge Clark just wanted this case out of his courtroom with as little backlash as possible. For him to rule as he did accomplished two things for him. It kept him from having to admit he ruled improperly by dismissing Tiller’s charges just before Christmas, and it kept him from having to deal with Foulston’s temper tantrums,” Newman said in reference to an incident during the proceeding where Foulston raised her voice in a tirade against Kline. “His ruling was more of an act of self-preservation than justice. The public should be howling about this!”

Newman was quoted in the Wichita Eagle saying, “A district attorney should be more interested in pursuing truth and justice, rather than getting into a power play with the attorney general. This is Queen Nola trying to run Sedgwick County like it’s her own little kingdom.”

When Is A “Misrepresentation” A Lie?

Kline also pointed out that Foulston misrepresented Kansas law on three points during Wednesday’s hearing.

“District Attorney Nola Foulston argued that she could pre-empt action by the Attorney General, that the statute of limitations had run on all of the cases and that there was no ability to appeal Judge Clark’s dismissal actions,” said Kline, indicating that Kansas law supported none of those assertions.

Newman was skeptical of Foulston’s apparent unfamiliarity with Kansas statutes. “We do not know if she is just ignorant of the law, if she purposefully misrepresented it to the court. In either case, Foulston now has a huge integrity problem.”

Special Prosecutor

Meanwhile, Kline appointed Wichita attorney Donald McKinney as special independent prosecutor in the Tiller case. Foulston told reporters that she would block any special prosecutor from working in her district. “I am the special prosecutor,” she said.

Attorney General-elect Paul Morrison, who takes Kline’s place as Kansas’ “top cop” in January today told reporters that he is not inclined to have a special prosecutor handle the Tiller case, and even if he did, “It certainly won’t be Mr. McKinney.”

Incoming AG Has Ties To Tiller

Morrison benefited during the recent election from an estimated one million dollars in “hit piece” campaign ads mailed throughout Kansas attacking Kline from third-party groups with direct ties to Tiller. Morrison had pledged to drop all investigations into Tiller and a Planned Parenthood abortion clinic in Overland Park, if elected. However, Morrison has since qualified his statements.

“Morrison is only saying he will look at the charges because he knows if he doesn’t, everyone will know he is paying back Tiller for his support during the election, but mark my words, Morrison will never prosecute Tiller in spite of everything he is saying right now. He owes Tiller too much,” said Newman. “In any other state in the Union, that would be called ‘corruption.’”

Outrage Over Injustice

Can Attorney General Kline get a hearing on law and not on emotionalism and cronyism? Newman says that will be up to the people of America.

“Now is the time to express our outrage at this shocking injustice. We know that Tiller is being charged with illegally killing viable late-term babies who should have had the protection of law. We know that the doctor who came to his abortion clinic and signed off on those abortions, Kristin Neuhaus, has turned state’s evidence and is now willing to testify against Tiller. These are serious charges — an astounding 30 of them — charges that need to be heard in a court of law. If we cannot speak up over this, then we should be ashamed. We cannot let this matter be thwarted and forgotten.”

“The O’Reilly Factor” guest host John Kasich agrees. “The story is not going to go away. O’Reilly won’t let it go away. Hopefully the people in that state won’t let it go away.”
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LET YOUR VOICE BE HEARD! (Whether you live in Kansas or not)

Please call District Attorney Nola Foulston and ask her to stop obstructing justice and allow the charges against Tiller to go forward.

District Attorney Nola Foulston
Voice: 316-660-3600
Toll Free: 800-432-6878
E-Mail: da@sedgwick.gov

Come to Operation Rescue’s event “A Cry for Justice” January 19-22, 2007. We will focus the eyes of the nation on this injustice and continue to apply public pressure on the authorities that are able to bring Tiller to justice once and for all. For more information about this national, critically-timed event, please visit our Cry for Justice Event Page.