INDIANAPOLIS (WXIN) — An legal professional representing Dr. Caitlin Bernard, who furnished an abortion on a 10-calendar year-old rape target, has filed a tort assert from Indiana Lawyer Typical Todd Rokita — the initial move in a defamation lawsuit from Rokita.
“Mr. Rokita’s bogus and misleading statements about alleged misconduct by Dr. Bernard in her occupation constitute defamation,” explained Attorney Kathleen A. DeLaney, who represents Bernard.
The lawsuit will come on the heels of a cease and desist issued by DeLaney, which was by itself a response to Rokita’s continued public responses aimed at Bernard. Rokita went on Fox News on July 13, calling Bernard an “abortion activist acting as a doctor” and claimed she had a “history of failing to report” and even threatened to go immediately after Bernard’s license.
The Fox News caption underneath Rokita proclaimed “Doc Failed to Report Abortion Abuse Sufferer,” according to the tort claim.
However, Nexstar’s WXIN obtained paperwork exhibiting that Bernard did file the report, and even filed it within just the timeframe demanded.
DeLaney also mentioned that a “simple check” on a govt license web site would have verified that Dr. Bernard’s license was lively with no disciplinary historical past.
In addition, Indiana College Overall health issued a statement expressing they carried out an investigation into Dr. Bernard and located her in compliance with privacy guidelines.
But regardless of Rokita and his business being ready to acquire this facts, Rokita spoke publically in nationwide and community media, continuing to vow an investigation into her license, and to see if she had submitted the report.
“Rokita possibly realized the statements have been fake or acted with reckless disregard to the truth or falsity of the statements,” DeLaney explained in the tort declare. “Mr. Rokita recklessly and/or negligently unsuccessful to determine whether the statements about Dr. Bernard’s licensure ended up legitimate or fake right before producing them.”
DeLaney claimed Rokita’s statements “exceed the general scope of Mr. Rokita’s authority as Indiana’s Lawyer Standard.”
“Given the recent political ambiance in the United States, Mr. Rokita’s remarks were supposed to heighten general public condemnation of Dr. Bernard, who legally provided legit health care care,” the tort assert claimed.
The submitting triggers a 90-working day investigative interval for the state to settle the declare, following which a lawsuit can be filed.
Rokita’s office delivered WXIN with the following assertion:
Attorney Common Rokita and the Business office of Legal professional Basic are leaders in the pro-existence movement. His historic perform has even more distinguished Indiana as a protector of unborn daily life and women. This is aspect of a divisive narrative and an try to distract from the crucial perform of the office environment, such as the responsibility to decide whetherpractitioners have violated the standards of follow in his or her profession, as properly as federal and point out regulations. We will defend towards baseless promises.
KELLY STEVENSON, Place of work OF Attorney Common TODD ROKITA
The Indiana Democratic Party also introduced a statement in response to the news:
“Hoosier taxpayers will now have to pay out for Legal professional General Todd Rokita’s countrywide smear marketing campaign from a medical professional who assisted a 10-yr-old rape survivor achieve a legal and safe abortion. The Indiana GOP shows much more and a lot more that they will do something to pursue their extremist agenda — an agenda that removes preference and forces females to have birth even in cases of rape, incest, or conserving the lifestyle of the mom. This agenda is way too intense for Indiana and Hoosiers have experienced more than enough of Rokita’s self-serving antics.”
DREW ANDERSON, SPOKESMAN FOR THE INDIANA DEMOCRATIC Party