Evidence Against Abortion Provider, Dr. Tiller, Gathered By Anti-Choice Activist?

Amie Newman

Former Attorney General Phill Kline makes no secret of his anti-choice position. But when he collected evidence against abortion provider Dr. Tiller to bring Tiller to trial, he used his Deputy Attorney General to do so - an anti-choice activist arrested over a dozen times for trespassing and protesting at abortion clinics.

Dr. George Tiller, the now-famous physician who performs late term abortions in Kansas (and one of the only physicians in the country who will perform abortions extremely late in the pregnancy if the pregancy poses a threat to the woman’s mental or physical health) is set to go on trial in March of 2009, facing criminal charges (19 misdemeanors) that he, according to the Associated Press, "failed to obtain a second opinion from an independent physician for some late term abortions."

On Monday, at a hearing to attempt to have the charges against Dr. Tiller dropped, Tiller’s attorneys argued that evidence obtained by former Attorney General Phill Kline was "tainted." Paul Morat, one of Tiller’s attorneys, charged that Phill Kline, even prior to becoming Attorney General had plans to investigate Dr. Tiller simply on account of Kline’s anti-abortion position. 

However, the big bomb of the day was Morat’s interrogation about Kline’s consumer protection chief, Bryan Brown, while AG. Brown was an anti-choice activist for many years (and still is by the looks of his blog) who was arrested at least twelve times for his anti-choice activism. 

Associated Press reports:

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During his unsuccessful 2006 bid for re-election, Kline had asserted that Brown, who has been arrested a dozen times during abortion protests, was not involved in the Tiller prosecution. However, defense attorneys produced a 2003 memo Brown wrote with the subject line, "abortion clinic overview."

Not only did Kline use an anti-abortion activist arrested a dozen times for engaging in illegal activities to help collect evidence against an abortion provider, in an unbelievable example of misuse of process he in fact relied on Brown to document names of abortion clinic employees. As a former clinic employee, this chills me to the bone. 

Brown’s rants on his blog portray a man with a mission, to be sure. Calling Tiller his "enemy", Brown writes, "I am proud to have one who does what he does for a "living" as an enemy."

Tiller’s lawyers are attempting to argue for suppression of Kline’s evidence in Tiller’s trial in March.  

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