CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Sunday, May 27, 2007

CrimProf John M. Burkoff Discusses Unborn Fetus Case

BurkoffjFrom University of Pittsburgh CrimProf John M. Burkoff recently commented on the prosecution of a Bloomfield, PA woman who hid her stillborn fetus in a freezer. District Judge Oscar J. Petite Jr. found enough evidence yesterday to hold the woman for trial on two misdemeanor counts, abusing a corpse and concealing the death of a child.

CrimProf Burkoff said he thinks the defense has a strong argument with concern to the concealment charge.

"There's every chance that the statute as it now exists would be held unconstitutional," but the matter has not been taken up specifically by the Supreme Court.

The abuse charge might also get tossed out at the Common Pleas level. "My guess is what the defense counsel is saying is correct," Mr. Burkoff said. "The key question is what is a corpse? Do you have to have been alive to be a corpse?" Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]

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