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Manslaughter charges dropped against US woman who lost her baby after being shot while pregnant

27 year-old Marshae Jones was shot during a fight last December.

Marshae Jones, whose foetus died after she was shot in a fight.
Marshae Jones, whose foetus died after she was shot in a fight.
Image: AP/PA Images

PROSECUTORS IN ALABAMA have dropped a manslaughter charge against a woman who was charged over the death of her foetus after she was shot five times.

27 year-old Marshae Jones was shot in the abdomen during a fight with another woman last December, an incident which led to the death of her five-month-old foetus.

She was arrested on manslaughter charges last week, when authorities argued that she was responsible for escalating the fight that led to her being shot.

The case was decried by rights groups before the district attorney for Bessemer Cutoff, southwest of the city of Birmingham, dropped the charges against Jones on Wednesday.

“There are no winners, only losers, in this sad case,” Lynniece Washington told a press conference, according to the news website AL.com.

Jones’s lawyer Mark White applauded Washington’s decision, which he called “appropriate” for his client and the state of Alabama.

“The District Attorney’s decision will help Marshae continue to heal from this tragic event,” he said in a statement.

The American Civil Liberties Union also released a statement commending the dismissal of charges, writing that the decision came from a prosecutor who was not afraid to use her discretion to apply law and justice correctly.

Jones’s arrest came amid heightened tensions around women’s rights after more than a dozen states in the southern and midwestern United States, including Alabama, passed restrictive abortion laws that are currently being challenged in court.

Alabama’s law, which was passed in May, bans abortion even in cases of rape or incest, equating it with homicide.

The law is set to come into force in November, but is likely to be blocked in court because it goes against the 1973 US Supreme Court Roe v Wade ruling that legalised abortion.

With reporting from - © AFP 2019.

Why have so many US states tightened abortion laws recently? Could a bill end up in the Supreme Court and potentially lead to an overturning of the Roe vs Wade judgement? We recently looked at the ongoing situation in our podcast, The Explainer.


Source: The Explainer/SoundCloud

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