SPRINGFIELD - An Oct. 1 competency hearing has been set here for the girl who was at the center of a storm of controversy and concern after she was hospitalized at age 11 with a serious head injury.
After Haleigh Poutre was brought to Noble Hospital Sept. 11, 2005, with a severe head injury, her adoptive mother and stepfather were charged with abuse. The state Department of Social Services at one point sought to have a feeding tube that was keeping her alive removed, saying the girl had no brain function. In February it was reported she had recovered enough to possibly testify in the criminal case.
Hampden Superior Court Judge Judd J. Carhart on Tuesday set the date for a competency hearing for Haleigh as requested by the lawyer for her stepfather, Jason D. Strickland.
In February, defense lawyer Alan J. Black said in a motion he filed that he had been told Haleigh had recovered to the point that she could testify against Strickland, 34. He immediately began raising issues of her competency to Carhart, who is specially assigned to the criminal case.
Black said he has not been allowed to see the girl by the state Department of Social Services, which has custody of Haleigh, nor the Franciscan Hospital for Children in Boston where Haleigh is hospitalized.
He said he has an expert reviewing Haleigh's medical records. "My expert would like to have access to the victim," he said.
In order to have Haleigh in Carhart's courtroom here for a competency hearing, Black will give her notice to appear, he said.
The Democratic Party is busy digging itself into a hole that will be difficult to climb out of. The party’s official platform has always called for American taxpayers to fund abortion along the lines laid out in Roe v. Wade. In other words, the party wants money withheld from your paycheck transferred to businesses that perform abortion on-demand throughout all nine months of pregnancy.
The new platform still calls for that: “The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to choose a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay, and we oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right,” it says.
But now it adds another thought: “The Democratic Party also strongly supports a woman’s decision to have a child by ensuring access to and availability of programs for pre- and post-natal health care, parenting skills, income support, and caring adoption programs.”
The natural question arises: Why do you strongly support a woman’s decision to have a child? If the answer is, “Because that’s a legitimate right of hers, and a woman does a noble thing when she keeps her child,” then a follow-up question is in order.
If you believe that a pregnant woman is carrying a child, what makes it okay for some women to kill theirs?
In fact, the new language, by admitting that women are carrying children, actually makes the party look worse.
Barack Obama started out deciding that unborn children didn’t have the right to life, and it wasn’t long before he added “accidental” newborns to his list. Next came the unwanted wife, Terri Schiavo. The Senate tried to save her when a court allowed her husband to starve her to death in the hospital. Obama called the Senate’s attempt a mistake.
Once you say that some people don’t have a right to life, where do you stop?
Thanks for the Haleigh Poutre update!
Prayers for Haleigh!