Last year, a man named John Kroack burst into a Seattle-area reproductive healthcare clinic, intimidated its workers, and tried to enter the exam room. Now federal prosecutors are suing him for violating the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act — and the text of their suit offers chilling details about his harassment.
From the lawsuit:
8. On January 5, 2010, Defendant entered the Health Center waiting room and engaged the Health Center manager in conversation about abortion services. The Defendant grew agitated and exited the Health Center without further incident.
9. Two days later, in the early morning hours of January 7, 2010, Defendant was witnessed walking along the wooded perimeter of the Health Center property.
10. At approximately 10:30 a.m. on January 7, 2010, Defendant entered the Health Center waiting room, and engaged the front desk employee in conversation about abortion services.
11. Defendant became agitated and attempted to open the door that separated the waiting room from the exam room hallway.
12. When Defendant could not open the door, he kicked the door several times, and threw his shoulder and body against the door several times.
13. As the Defendant struck the door, he yelled: "You baby killers! You are all going to hell for being murderers."
14. Defendant's blows impacted a Health Center nurse, who had pressed his body against the reverse side of the door in an attempt to reinforce the door against the Defendant's strikes.
15. Defendant's actions caused the Health Center manager to call 911, and then to direct staff to take refuge in a "safe room" in the rear of the Health Center.
16. Defendant did not stop beating on the door until police arrived at the Health Center and apprehended Defendant, placing him in handcuffs.
17. Defendant told the police that they "need to watch this place."
18. Defendant's car, which he had parked in the Health Center parking lot, contained a machete and several "army-style" bags containing netting, rip cord, tools, and camouflage clothing.
As ClinicEscort points out, it's disturbing that a medical clinic even has to have a "safe room." But Kroack's onslaught — and the machete he had in his car — clearly show why it's necessary. Prosecutors are asking that Kroack be banned from coming within 25 feet of the clinic, and be assessed a $10,000 fine. If they're successful, maybe clinics in Seattle and nationwide will be a little safer as a result.
Seattle Prosecutors Take Action Against Anti-Abortion Activist [Seattle Post-Intelligencer]
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