A 35-year-old woman, Sarah Louise Catt, admitted in a Leeds Crown Court today that she aborted her own pregnancy by taking medication that she had allegedly purchased on the internet. She pleaded guilty to a charge under Section 58 of the 1861 Offences Against the Person Act, which, if convicted, carries a maximum life imprisonment sentence.
Catt, who has two other children, ages 8 and 10, was 30 weeks pregnant in March 2012 according to an ultrasound scan she received, reports the Daily Mail. According to police, she intentionally ended her pregnancy within a week of her due date.
According to the law in the country, an abortion is legal in the UK during the first 24 weeks of pregnancy so long as certain criteria are met. However, Catt was well past the 24 week month when she aborted her pregnancy.
As reported by The Independent, Chief Inspector Kerrin Smith of the North Yorkshire Police, stated:
“Sarah Catt has today entered a guilty plea to the court. This marks the end of a long police investigation but many questions remain unanswered.”
“Although a guilty plea has been entered today, Sarah Catt has not co-operated with the investigation at any stage and so the question ‘What has happened to the baby which Catt was carrying?’ remains unanswered.
To date no remains of that pregnancy and no child has been traced.”
While investigating the case, North Yorkshire Police gathered evidence that Catt had purchased a medication over the internet that would facilitate the labor and birth of a child. Unfortunately, taking the medication resulted in the abortion of her pregnancy during her third trimester, which, by law, is illegal.
In fact, police believe that Catt aborted her pregnancy within a week of her due date. As reported by the Yorkshire Post, Smith concludes:
“The evidence shows this to have happened in the final phase of pregnancy, the third trimester, ie within the last week of the due date that this baby should have been born.”
Catt and her husband have refused to comment on the case.
Do you think that Catt should be charged for aborting her own pregnancy using a medication that she purchased on the internet?