Police in Rosedale, New York, responded to a bizarre bit of domestic violence on Wednesday when they arrived at the home of anesthesiologist Thomas Pfeiffer. The doctor, police charge, not only assaulted a woman in his home, but also forced her to swallow an emergency contraception pill in the hopes of inducing an abortion.
The woman, who is unnamed in a report from the Daily Mail, reportedly informed Thomas Pfeiffer, an anesthesiologist from Red Hook, that she had taken a home pregnancy test. Upon hearing of the test’s positive result, Pfeiffer reportedly flew into a rage.
Pfeiffer is said to have begun choking the woman in an attempt to get her to swallow a Plan B emergency contraceptive pill.
Authorities apparently would not have been made aware of the incident had someone involved not called 911. The emergency service dispatched officers to a home in Rosendale, New York – about 60 miles south of Albany – where they found Pfeiffer and the woman he allegedly choked. Pfeiffer was arrested and charged with strangulation and assault. Pfeiffer has also been charged with committing an “abortional act,” which is illegal if the party the act is performed upon does not consent. More charges are pending.
Pfeiffer may or may not have retained an attorney already, but he is currently being held in the county jail on $50,000 cash bail.
The woman’s identity has not been released, and authorities have not released details on her relationship with Pfeiffer. She was treated at Health Alliance Hospital in Kingston and released.
Even if Pfeiffer succeeded in getting the woman to swallow the Plan B medication, it is unlikely that the dosage would have achieved his presumably desired result. An emergency contraceptive measure, Plan B only works in the 72 hours following unprotected sex, stopping the release of an egg from an ovary. The medication may also prevent a sperm from fertilizing an egg, and if fertilization does occur, Plan B One-Step may prevent a fertilized egg from attaching to the womb.
The woman Pfeiffer allegedly choked, though, had already received a positive pregnancy test. Contrary to some beliefs, Plan B does not act as an abortifacient.