Archive for  March 2nd 2018

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DES MOINES, Iowa–  The Illinois Department of Public Health says tougher abortions laws are causing more women coming in from other Midwestern states to get an abortion.

And a new bill which further restricts abortions in Iowa is on its way to the Iowa House of Representatives.

The bill was passed in the state senate yesterday with bi-partisan support.

The decision has Iowans divided.

“the way that I view this is you always hear but what if she can’t take care of it,” Fort Des Moines Church of Christ Pastor Michael Demastus said.

Taking care of it, wasn’t the issue for Amanda Acton.

“I don’t believe that we should be allowing politicians who have a religious view of life to make this decision,” Amanda Acton said. “A decision which should be left up to a woman and her partner”.

Acton’s baby girl was named Leslie, Leslie had a fetal anomaly and hadn’t developed any lungs.

Acton decided to abort the pregnancy after the six-week mark.

“Even thinking about it now it gets me emotional we chose this because it was the one thing we could do for her, it was the one choice we had that would prevent her suffering,” Acton said.

The so called fetal heart beat bill would outlaw most abortions after six weeks or, once a heartbeat is detected.

“Most of the fetal anomalies can be tested early in the pregnancy but you don’t do it until ten weeks so, this bill would not even account for those types of situations,” Acton said.

It does though provide exemptions for a mom whose life is at risk.

The bill does not give any recourse to rape or victims of incest.

Fort Des Moines Church of Christ Pastor Michael Demastus agrees.

“In terms of rape why would we punish the innocent for the crimes of the father,” asked Pastor Demastus. “When does that ever happen in law, when we punish an innocent person for the crime of someone else? The child and baby are absolutely innocent”.

Demastus believes life begins at conception and, so do 55% of Iowans who were polled by the Des Moines Register.

But people like Amanda Acton say regardless, a woman should always have the right to choose.

“I would never want a woman to turn to Planned Parent Hood, I would want her to turn to the church and, “say I am going to keep it what now,” Demastus said.

If the bill passes, it would be illegal for doctors to perform abortions after six weeks.

If caught not obeying the law, the punishment is up to five years in prison.

The American Civil Liberties Union calls this bill unconstitutional but, was not able to comment on whether legal action will be taken if this bill is signed into law.

ANKENY, Iowa  —  A lawsuit filed against the Ankeny School District alleges it didn’t do enough to prevent the bullying of a student who suffered permanent brain damage as a result of an assault on school grounds.

Audrey Vacek is seeking damages for negligence from the school district and the family of the girl who attacked her.  Vacek says the schools inaction allowed bullying to reach the point where a 17-year-old attacked her in a classroom at Ankeny High School.  Vacek struck her head on a wall during that attack.  The injuries she suffered lead to brain damage and recurrent panic attacks.

“Mallory”, the girl who attacked Vacek, was punished in juvenile court, according to Vacek’s lawsuit.  It also claims part of “Mallory”‘s sentence was to share anti-bullying speeches at Ankeny Centennial High School, where “Mallory” was forced to transfer.  “Mallory” was then given an award for giving the speeches.

“Honestly, I was furious. It’s just infuriating that even though she admitted to bullying me and assaulting me, she admitted it under oath, and they gave her an award,” says Vacek, “The school knew that she admitted it, they knew everything and they still gave her an award.”

The lawsuit claims that Vacek spoke to administrators including a Vice Principal and a School Counselor about the bullying long before the attack.  Then, in September 2016, “Mallory” punched Vacek during Spanish class after the teacher had left the room.  Mallory hit her head on the wall and at first thought she’d only suffered a concussion.  After her symptoms failed to improve doctors diagnosed her with brain damage.  It causes memory loss and panic attacks.  Vacek says she was forced to quit the varsity volleyball team because of the threat of suffering a second, potentially fatal, head injury.


“We don’t want this to happen to somebody else, it’s too late for anything to help me because I have permanent brain damage from this and PTSD, but it’s not too late for other students. “

The Ankeny School District says it can’t speak directly about pending litigation but it defends its anti-bullying response.

“Ankeny Schools is sympathetic to the physical and emotional issues described in the student’s reported experience. Bullying behavior is taken seriously and not condoned in Ankeny Schools.  There are policies and procedures in place for students who feel they experience bullying.  When concerns or issues regarding student conduct arise, Ankeny Community Schools administrators investigate any reports and follow policy set by the Board of Education, based on the circumstances.  We investigate every report we receive and do not take any allegation lightly. When fulfilling this duty, we respect the privacy of both those raising the concerns, as well as those whose actions are questioned.”