Fertility Doctor's Son Accused of Killing Girlfriend's Unborn Baby
The son of a Florida fertility doctor has been accused of killing his ex-girlfriend's unborn child by tricking her into taking an abortion drug, according to federal authorities.
If 28-year-old John Andrew Welden is found guilty, he could face life behind bars.
Prosecutors said on Wednesday that Welden forged a doctor's signature on a prescription for Cytotec, relabeled a medication bottle as "Amoxicillin" and told his girlfriend at the time that his father wanted her on antibiotics, according to Associated Press.
The Tampa Bay Times reports that the incident happened in March after an ultra sound at Dr. Stephen Ward Welden's office confirmed the pregnancy. According to the paper, the doctor is not accused of any crime.
Welden's ex-girlfriend, 26-year-old Remee Lee, was six weeks and five days pregnant, according to her lawyer, Gil Sanchez. Sanchez filed a lawsuit in state court claiming battery and emotional distress on Wednesday as the government began its criminal case in federal court.
Lee and Welden had split a few months ago. However, the pair reunited long enough for Lee to become pregnant. Sanchez said that Lee was "so excited" and wanted to keep the baby, even if she had to raise the child at home with her parents, according to Tampa Bay Times.
Federal prosecutors said that Lee took the abortion pill on her way to work. Not long afterwards she felt abdominal pain and began bleeding. She later lost the baby at a hospital.
Defense attorney David Weisbrod characterized his client's actions as "aberrant". However, he pointed out that Welden has no prior criminal record. Weldon was denied bail on Wednesday, and could face a life sentence.