Tamiia Russell
Tamiia Russell

Life Site News reports that 15-year-old Tamiia Russell died January 8, 2004 after a second trimester abortion at Woman Care Clinic in Lanthrup Village, near Detroit.

Nicole Redden told reporters about her 15-year-old cousin's death that followed a late-term abortion there: "This stuff needs to stop. People need to take a first hand look at what happens here."

What follows is pieced together from various reports and interviews with Tamiia's cousin and mother.

Taisha Glenn, the sister of Tamiia's 24-year-old "boyfriend", Stacy Glenn, arranged the abortion without notifiying Tamiia's family. Stacy Glenn, according to Frances Russell, Tamiia's mother, is a reputed drug dealer who has not been located since Tamiia's death. He paid the $2000 for the abortion.

Glenn's sister, Taisha, took the girl to five different Detroit area abortion facilities, and was turned away from all five because of how far advanced Tamiia's pregnancy was. She was at least six months pregnant. One facility reportedly even offered prenatal care and vitamins. Finally Taisha found an abortionist willing to proceed -- WomanCare, a Winthorop Village abortion facility run by abortionist Abraham Alberto Hodari. Despite the fact that the pregnancy was the result of statutory rape, and despite the fact that he had no permission from Tamiia's parents or guardian, as required by Michigan law, the clinic agreed to take the case. Tamiia used an identification card with another woman's picture to claim that she was 19, but according to Tamiia's cousin, the woman in the picture ID looked nothing like Tamiia.

Tamiia's presumably safe and legal abortion was begun on January 7, when laminaria was inserted. Laminaria are sticks of seaweed used to dilate the cervix. Staff then sent Tamiia home. Once home, Tamiia confessed to her aunt and mother that she was pregnant and she had begun the abortion. Tamiia's mother said that she called the clinic, and staff told her that the abortion once be carried out once the laminaria are inserted. This is not true; laminaria can be removed and the pregnancy continued, with medical supervision. In fact, many crisis pregnancy centers offer laminaria removal for women who have changed their minds after beginning an abortion procedure.

Based on the false claim that Tamiia had no choice but to go through with the abortion, her mother drove her to WomanCare on January 8 for the actual abortion procedure. Tamiia bled heavily after coming home froom the abortion -- so heavily that the blood soaked a mattress. Tamiia's mother called WomanCare, where staff told her that such bleeding was normal and instructed them not to bring Tamiia to a hospital. Her family ignored this advice and called an ambulance, which rushed the girl to Sinai-Grace Hospital, where she was dead on arrival.

Dr. Leigh Hlavaty, who performed the autopsy on Tamiia, told a local pro-life activist who contacted LifeSiteNews.com that the girl's death was caused by "uterine infarction with sepsis due to status second trimester abortion." Hlavaty said, "I ruled it normal because these complications are expected with this type of abortion."

Oakland County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Jim Halushka told LifeNews.com that his office has reviewed an initial investigation by police into the abortion. If the abortion facility knew that Russell was under 18, they could be charged with a misdemeanor for performing an abortion on a minor. The investigation was turned back over to police for further investigation.

State Attorney General Mike Cox told WDEO Radio by email that he is looking into the incident, and one of his staff confirmed the state's interest in the case.
Because Tamiia resided in Wayne County, the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office has jurisdiction over the statutory rape. However, as the family apparently did not know Russell was pregnant until the day before she died, the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office said that there may not be a case -- the parents or guardians must make the complaint, and once the minor is dead, the complaint of statutory rape cannot be filed.

Dr. Miller, director of Citizens for a Pro-life Society, reports that there have been 23 lawsuits in the past 20 years against WomanCare facilities and Alberto Hodari, for abortion injuries including complications resulting on hysterectomies on 19, 22, and 23-year-old women. All were dismissed, with many referring to undisclosed settlements.

Hodari was also implicated in the deaths of Chivon Williams and Regina Johnson.

"I don't want this to happen to anyone else," Redden told reporters. She says she plans to speak at schools to encourage young people to seek help for problems from their loved ones. "I want to tell them, 'No secret is worth your life,'" Redden said.

At the time of Tamiia's death, Womancare was a member of the National Abortion Federation.
    • National Abortion Federation Promises
      National Abortion Federation Promises

    • Screen capture of assurance of safe, quality care on National
    • Abortion Federation web site. It reads:
    • "What is a NAF Clinic? NAF is the professional association of
    • abortion providers in North America. .... In order to become a member,
    • a clinic must complete a rigorous application process. Member clinics
    • have agreed to comply with our standards for quality and care....
    • NAF periodically conducts site visits to confirm that our clinics
    • are in compliance with our guidelines.

Online Sources: