Plea withdrawn in Utah hired beating case

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

Vernal, Utah (AP) - A Utah teenage who pleaded no contest to hiring a man to beat her in an effort to induce a miscarriage has been released from jail after a judge ruled she is not criminally liable.

Eighth District Juvenile Court Judge Larry Steele called the girl’s actions seeking to end her pregnancy shocking and crude in a ruling last week. But he said they fit the definition of an abortion.

The 17-year-old girl from Uintah County, who has not been identified because of her age, pleaded no contest in June to a second-degree felony count of criminal solicitation to commit murder.

But the teen’s mother got a new attorney who argued that under Utah law women cannot be held criminally liable for soliciting an abortion.

The baby survived the beating and was born in mid-August.

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