An At-Home Abortion Turns Into Murder Charge For One Texas Woman
Reported By a Local Hosptial
Last week a 26-year-old woman was arrested and charged with murder, however, she was soon released on a half a million-dollar bail. Lizelle Herrera was reported to authorities by a hospital, stating she was said to have caused “the death of an individual by self-induced abortion.”
Aggressive and Restrictive Abortion Laws in Texas
Texas has some of the most restrictive and enforced abortion laws in the country. According to Sheriff Maj. Carlos Delgado “Herrera was arrested and served with an indictment on the charge of Murder after Herrera did then and there intentionally and knowingly cause the death of an individual by self-induced abortion."
Enforcement of the Law
Back in September 2021, Gov. Abbot signed a state law banning abortions in Texas for women who are as early as six weeks pregnant. The law leaves enforcement to private citizens who can sue doctors or anyone who helps a woman get an abortion.
The strict abortion law, however, exempts mothers from a criminal homicide charge for aborting their own pregnancy. “(Homicide) doesn’t apply to the murder of an unborn child if the conduct charged is ‘conduct committed by the mother of the unborn child,’” University of Texas law professor Stephen Vladeck explained.
Unclear and Foggy Details
The details are still a bit foggy, as it is unclear if Herrea was the mother of the unborn child or if she was assisting with the abortion. Sheriff Delgado did not say under what law Herrera has been charged.
Lynn Paltrow, the executive director of National Advocates for Pregnant Women commented on the situation, “What’s a little mysterious in this case is, what crime has this woman been charged with?“There is no statute in Texas that, even on its face, authorizes the arrest of a woman for self-managed abortion.”
Ultimately the murder charges against Herrera who was said to have caused "the death of an individual by self-induced abortion" have been dropped, according to District Attorney Gocha Allen Ramirez. Furthermore, District Attorney Ramirez observed the damage that has been done, "It is clear to me that the events leading up to this indictment have taken a toll on Ms. Herrera and her family."