ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Last year, after Kansas abortion provider George Tiller was murdered in church, his supporters worried about what would happen to the hundreds of women who sought late-term abortions each year at Tiller’s clinic, which was closed after his death.
Some physicians are quietly stepping forward.
Curtis Boyd, an Albuquerque doctor, recently announced on his Web site that, in response to Tiller’s death, he has begun performing third-trimester abortions. Boyd, 72, also announced that he has hired two California physicians, Susan Robinson and Shelley Sella, who used to work with Tiller in Wichita on a rotating basis.
“Dr. Tiller was one of the few doctors in the United States who provided late-term abortions to women with severe fetal abnormalities or maternal health indications,” said a statement on Boyd’s Web site. “Appointments for late abortions are now available.”
Boyd, Robinson and Sella declined interview requests. All have been targets of vitriolic attacks on anti-abortion Web sites.
After Tiller was murdered by Scott Roeder, who faces sentencing April 1, the National Abortion Federation began asking members who already provide second-trimester abortions to consider extending their practices to include third-trimester abortions.
NAF President Vicki Saporta would not say how many besides Boyd agreed. “If I give you a number and you print it, the people who want to do these people harm will get all over the Internet and try to figure out who these people might be and how to target them,” Saporta said.