A Tennessee woman has been charged with attempted murder, following her failed attempt of a coat hanger abortion. Anna Yocco, a 31-year-old Murfreesboro resident, sat down in a bathtub and used a wire coat hanger in an attempt to induce an abortion. She was 24 weeks pregnant at the time and because of Tenessee’s strict abortion prohibitions she felt forced to take matters into her own hands.
When she bled profusely some time after the procedure, Yocco’s boyfriend transported her to Saint Thomas Midtown Hospital and treated. Doctor’s at the hospital delivered the infant, live, despite Yocco’s wishes. The baby boy weighed just one-and-a-half pounds and was four months premature which means he will undoubtedly have health problems. The infant suffered significant damage to his eyes, heart, and lungs as a direct result of the attempted abortion, and Doctors reported that the baby will experience significant difficulties in life. But they chose to save him… Even though they damn-well knew that the child would suffer his entire life, they chose to bring him into the world to a mother that doesn’t want him.
Tennessee’s controversial anti-abortion laws have been the subject of great debate. The state of Tennessee requires that those seeking an abortion must first attend a counseling session and must provide proof that they live in the state of Tennessee, an objective of difficulty for the poorest of the poor. The procedure must be then performed within the first trimester, following a minimum 48-hour waiting period. Second and third trimester abortions or partial birth abortions are only allowable when the viability of the fetus is in question, or the mother is at significant risk for loss of life.
Tennessee has not only restricted a woman’s ability to obtain an abortion but has limited women’s access to birth control by allowing physicians and medical staff of private institutions to limit or refuse the issuance of any or all birth control medications and devices. So they have made it harder to prevent pregnancy, and harder to abort unwanted pregnancies, and when poor, scared women try to take matters into their own, unqualified hands and botch the job, Tennessee has made it so that mother is convicted of murder. It’s a horrible, terrifying cycle.
It was made public that Yocco made no attempts to seek medical care or advice during her pregnancy, but the reason she failed to seek care remains unclear. Yocco is scheduled to appear in court on the charge of attempted murder on December 21.