In a continuing investigation into Planned Parenthood, the student-led non-profit Live Action Films has produced video footage showing staffers at two Planned Parenthood clinics in Phoenix, Arizona avoiding their legal obligations to report statutory rape.
Instead of reporting the abuse, the clinics offered to help secure a judicial bypass for someone they thought was a 15-year-old girl with a much older boyfriend.
Arizona law states that sex between an adult and a minor is punishable as a felony. State law also mandates the reporting of suspected statutory rape.
College students Lila Rose and Jackie Stollar entered two Planned Parenthood clinics while posing as 15-year-old girls. Stollar claimed she was pregnant and Rose, who is Live Action Films president, played the role of her friend.
On July 9, 2008 the student investigators spoke with a staffer at the first Planned Parenthood clinic. One student asked the staffer, who was named as “Erica,” how old she had to be to get an abortion. The staffer said she must be 18 or older to obtain an abortion unless she acquires a “judicial bypass.”
“You would have to call our counselor and arrange it with her, and what she will do is she will go with you to court. From what I hear, it’s a very, um, easy process,” the staffer Erica explained.
Stellar then whispered “There’s another problem, um, he’s a lot older than me. And I don’t know if she’s gonna ask questions about that or if the judge is gonna ask questions about that.”
“I would probably confide in her about that,” Erica advised. “I know that she’s really good at, she wants to help anybody who comes to her.”
Rose, then asked “So like if he came in and paid for it, like with her, that wouldn’t be an issue.”
“No, we don’t ask any questions,” the Planned Parenthood staffer answered, claiming it is only a “big issue” if the girl is 13 or under.
The investigators proceeded to another clinic, where they spoke with a staffer named as “Suzy”
Telling Suzy she is trying to obtain a judicial bypass, Stellar said “I’m only 15 and my parents can’t know about it.”
While speaking to the staffer, the age of the student’s supposed boyfriend became a topic of conversation.
“Everything is confidential here,” the staffer assured, before Stellar stated that her boyfriend is 27 years old.
“I can't say 'Don't,' you know, or 'I'm gonna go and do this.' I cannot be that way, it's not me," the Planned Parenthood staffer said to Stellar, whom she believed to be a 15-year-old girl.
“When you go over to the counselor, she might ask you certain questions, she might say some stuff, you know what I mean? But all that, it’s up to you, you know what I mean?”
The video investigations are part of the Live Action Film’s Mona Lisa Project, which probes Planned Parenthood clinics to document staffers’ responses to alleged cases of statutory rape. Following the group’s investigation in Indiana, state prosecutors launched investigations into Planned Parenthood of Indiana.
In February, Live Action exposed a similar case at a Tucson, Arizona Planned Parenthood clinic. In 2002, an Arizona judge found the abortion provider negligent for failing to report the sexual abuse of a 13-year-old girl by her 23-year-old foster brother.
"By keeping information about rapists confidential, Planned Parenthood enables sexual predators to continue violating young girls. If Arizona state authorities investigate Planned Parenthood's statutory rape reporting practices, they can help bring an end to these crimes," Lila Rose said in a Wednesday press release.
The seven minute video of the two Arizona clinic visits is viewable at www.LiveAction.org