American mother and teen daughter charged after illegal abortion


Authorities in Nebraska have charged a mother and her teenage daughter with felonies after they allegedly performed an illegal home abortion and then tried to burn and bury the foetus, which the expectant girl allegedly referred to as a “thing” she wanted “out of her body”.

According to CBS14, Jessica Burgess, 41, has been charged in Madison County with carrying out or attempting to carry out an abortion longer than 20 weeks, carrying out an abortion while not a licensed physician, removing, concealing, or abandoning a dead body, concealing the death of another person, and false reporting.

Celeste Burgess, her now-18-year-old daughter, has been charged as an adult with removing, hiding, and leaving a dead body, with concealing another person’s death; and with making false reports.

The charges brought against them as a result of Celeste’s pregnancy termination in April, when she was just 17 years old, have been denied by both the mother and the daughter.

Also read | Roe v. Wade overturned: Comparative analysis of Indian and American abortion laws

Tanner Barnhill, 22, who reportedly assisted the Burgesses in burying the aborted foetus, has been charged with attempting to conceal the death of another person.

According to court records, in April, authorities in Norfolk allegedly got a tip that Celeste had given birth to a stillborn child in a bathtub a week earlier.

Watch: Gravitas Plus | Why are women being denied the right to abortion?

According to the court documents, when the teen was questioned by an investigator, she allegedly admitted to having a miscarriage after midnight on April 22 and stated that she and her mother had put the foetus in a bag in the back of their van.

Additionally, Jessica and Celeste said Barnhill, whose friendship with the two women has remained a mystery, assisted them in burying the foetus on his land in the future.

(With inputs from agencies)

 

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