Doctors charged with murder after 35 fetuses found

December 31, 2011 06:24


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BALTIMORE - Two doctors have been charged under a fetal homicide law after an investigation into a botched abortion uncovered 35 fetuses in a Maryland clinic's freezer, authorities said on Friday, calling the case the first of its kind in the state.

The doctors, Steven Chase Brigham, 55, and Nicola Irene Riley, 46, were both arrested on fugitive warrants on Wednesday, police in Elkton, Maryland, said.

"They have been indicted based upon a fetal homicide statute. This is probably the first case that Maryland has ever seen with this factual scenario using this statute. It's a unique situation," Maryland State Attorney Ellis Rollins told Reuters.

The Baltimore Sun newspaper said the fetuses discovered at the clinic ranged up to 35 weeks in development. A fetus is generally considered viable at about 24 weeks.

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