WICHITA, Kan. -- The Kansas attorney general, a vocal abortion opponent, charged a well-known abortion provider with illegally performing late-term abortions, but a Sedgwick County judge yesterday threw out the charges after less than a day.
Judge Paul W. Clark dismissed the charges against Dr. George Tiller at the request of Sedgwick County District Attorney Nola Foulston, who said her office had not been consulted by Attorney General Phill Kline.
Clark signed his one-page order only hours after Kline's complaint against Tiller was unsealed.
Kline, who lost his reelection bid and leaves office in three weeks, said he would try to get Clark to reinstate the charges.
"We are pursuing a legal remedy to what we consider a flawed decision by a district court judge," Kline said at a news conference in Topeka.
The 30 misdemeanor counts Kline filed against Tiller involve 15 abortions from July through November 2003.
They were performed on patients 22 years old or younger, including a 10-year-old, according to the criminal complaint unsealed yesterday in Sedgwick County District Court.
Tiller's clinic, known for being one of the few in the country to perform late-term abortions, has been a high-profile target of antiabortion protesters for decades.
The clinic was bombed in 1985, and Tiller was shot in both arms by a protester in 1993.