HOUSTON, Texas — The Texas grand jury that leveled criminal charges against a pro-life leader who investigated the practices of the abortion giant Planned Parenthood never voted on whether or not to charge Planned Parenthood with any crimes, reports state.
An attorney with Planned Parenthood revealed the information to the Associated Press on Wednesday, stating that a prosecutor with the Harris County District Attorney’s office told him that the jury didn’t vote on whether or not Planned Parenthood had committed any wrongdoing.
“Planned Parenthood attorney Josh Schaffer said a prosecutor told him the grand jury never even voted on possible criminal charges against the nation’s largest abortion provider,” the outlet reported. The name of the prosecutor was not cited.
Some state that the revelation means that the abortion giant wasn’t even investigated, although Republican lawmakers had specifically requested that District Attorney Devon Anderson open up an investigation into Planned Parenthood’s practices in the first place.
“No vote means no investigation,” Cheryl Sullenger, senior vice president of Operation Rescue, said in a statement. “The people are entitled to an unbiased investigation into the serious allegations of illegal conduct by Planned Parenthood. That does not appear to have happened.”
Instead, jurors considered and voted on charges against the pro-life group that sought to expose concerns surrounding Planned Parenthood’s harvesting and sale of fetal organs.
As previously reported, David Daleiden of the Center for Medical Progress (CMP) was indicted on Monday on a felony charge of “tampering with a governmental record” for creating a fake driver’s license in conducting his undercover investigation, as well as a misdemeanor count related to the purchasing of aborted babies.
“The tampering charge … is for the use of a California identification in order to enter the Planned Parenthood clinic for the purpose of investigation,” Katie Short with the Life Legal Defense Association told reporters. “However, the law also provides a defense where the false information has ‘no effect on the government’s purpose for requiring the governmental record.’”
Daleiden, 27, had posed as a representative of a fetal tissue procurement company in order to engage in discussions with Planned Parenthood officials as a potential buyer of bodily organs. He recorded the interactions, conducted at various locations across the country, as part of his “human capital” investigative series that was released in July.
Sandra Merritt, 62, was also charged with tampering with a governmental record for likewise printing the license, which was used to obtain access to Planned Parenthood gathering in Houston.
The first of nearly a dozen videos was released by CMP featured Planned Parenthood Medical Director Deborah Nucatola, who nonchalantly munched on salad and sipped wine as she talked about adjusting the child so as not to crush certain organs due to the demand for the body part.
“I’d say a lot of people want liver. And for that reason, most providers will do this case under ultrasound guidance, so they’ll know where they’re putting their forceps,” she explains. [Y]ou’re just kind of cognizant where you put your graspers. You try to intentionally go above and below the thorax, so that—-you know. We’ve been very good at getting the heart, lung, liver, because we know that, so ‘I’m not gonna crush that part. I’m gonna basically crush below, I’m gonna crush above, and I’m gonna see if I can get it all intact.’”
The second video showed Mary Gatter, the president of Planned Parenthood’s Medical Directors Council, haggling with the undercover investigators about the compensation for the fetal organs, laughing, “I want a Lamborghini.” Other footage showed an actual aborted baby being dissected in a dish, with an assistant declaring, “Another boy!” and another video showed an abortionist laughing about how harvesting an intact baby head would be “something to strive for.”
Some had questioned if Harris County’s investigation into Planned Parenthood’s practices would be fair following the discovery that a prosecutor in the Division of Criminal Family Law also serves as a director on the board of Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast.
According to reports, Lauren Reeder told Anderson earlier this year about her work with the abortion giant in order to be “transparent.” However, she also said that she didn’t see a conflict of interest in the situation.
“I don’t think there’s any conflict in my dual roles in two separate organizations,” Reeder told reporters.
Anderson said that Reeder would not be involved with the case.