MOUNT CLEMENS, Mich., Jan. 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith authorized criminal charges today against a sixteen-year-old Richmond male accused of terminating his girlfriend's pregnancy with a souvenir baseball bat.
The charge, Intentional conduct against a pregnant individual resulting in miscarriage or stillbirth, is a felony punishable by up to fifteen years imprisonment.
According to Michigan State Police detectives, the youths intentionally caused the death of the fetus by striking the mother's abdomen with the twenty-two inch bat over the course of two weeks. The parents of the youths were apparently unaware of the pregnancy and the decision to abort it.
The actions of the youths first came to light when the female spoke about the series of incidents after the fact at a high school leadership conference in the upper peninsula. The conference's adult facilitator, hearing of the incidents leading to the miscarriage, contacted the State Police.
The report of the county's medical examiner indicates that the fetus was premature and not viable at the time of the miscarriage. The report lists the cause of death as blunt impact of the maternal abdomen.
Prosecutor Smith is relying on law created by the Michigan Legislature in 1999. According to that law, only the person making the intentional conduct against the pregnant individual is criminally liable. The pregnant individual herself, however complicit in the termination, is not.
The male, because of his age and lack of prior contacts with the criminal justice system, will be adjudicated in the juvenile court. If convicted, he would be subject to the jurisdiction of that court until he is twenty-one years old.
The mother, also sixteen years old, will not be charged with a crime.
Prosecutor Smith said the defendant must plead guilty as charged or face trial.
"This crime is shocking and reprehensible," he said. "I will not entertain any plea bargaining on it."