Utah Woman Refuses Caesarean Section, Charged With Murder After a Twin Dies

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In Utah, Melissa Ann Rowland is charged with murder after she refuses to undergo a Caesarean section, a decision which appears to have contributed to one of her twins being stillborn. According to the Utah Supreme Court, fetuses at all stages of development are covered by the state's homicide law.

Many protest the decision to charge her with murder, arguing that such personal medical decisions should be left to women without state interference. In the past Utah's homicide laws have been used to charge substance abusers whose children are harmed by the use of drugs, but this is the first time a woman has been charged simply for refusing to take a doctor's advice.

Eventually the capital murder charge will be dropped due to Melissa Ann Rowland's mental health history; she will instead plead guilty to child endangerment.

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