The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children that since July 1987, there have been 17 cases of what is called “fetus abduction.” A fetus abduction is an occurrence where one person attacks a pregnant woman to remove the fetus from her body. One of those occurred on March 18th of this year. The victim is 26-year-old Michelle Wilkins of Colorado, who is one of only two of the 17 women to experience this type of attack to survive.
A Craigslist ad for baby clothes is what brought Wilkins to the home of 34-year-old Dynel Lane. Wilkins had moved to Colorado to teach pottery classes and was eight months pregnant. When the pregnant woman got to the home, Lane beat and stabbed her. She went on to remove the unborn fetus from Wilkins’s body.
According to the Associated Press, Lane was arrested at an area hospital after she told her husband she had a miscarriage. Prosecutors plan to charge her today. Wilkins was released from the hospital a week after the attack and is facing a long, pricey road to full recovery. The baby girl she carried in her womb, and planned to name Aurora, did not survive the attack. Caring individuals donated to an online fundraising campaign and raised $45,000 to help Wilkins during this rough time.
Charges against Lane may be tricky, though. It all depends on how the fetus died. Under Colorado law, prosecutors must prove that the baby was alive outside of Wilkins’s body. Otherwise, there is no way to charge Lane with murder. This should add fuel to the national issue of whether or not a fetus is a human being by legal standards. Two cases of fetuses being violently killed failed to be tried as homicide in Colorado.