Alabama Supreme Court Upholds Personhood of Unborn Babies, Judge Calls for End to Roe

By Emily Ward | October 22, 2018 | 11:46am EDT
(Getty Images North America.) 

( -- The Alabama Supreme Court unanimously voted to uphold the “value” and personhood of unborn babies in the womb on Friday, Oct. 19, in the case of Jessie Livell Phillips v. State of Alabama.  On Dec. 18, 2015 in the Marshall Circuit Court, Jessie Phillips was convicted of the 2009 “intentional killing of his wife, Erica Phillips, and their unborn child (‘Baby Doe’),” and sentenced to death, according to the case report. Erica Phillips “had been approximately eight weeks pregnant” when she was murdered.

In its Friday opinion, which upheld the decisions of the Marshall Circuit Court and the Court of Criminal Appeals, the Alabama Supreme Court wrote, “Alabama recognizes an unborn baby as a life worthy of respect and protection… In other words, under the criminal laws of the State of Alabama, the value of the life of an unborn child is no less than the value of the lives of other persons.”

Jessie Phillips. (YouTube)

Jessie Phillips had appealed his death sentence, arguing that “the term ‘person’… does not include an ‘unborn child’” and taking issue with the Marshall Circuit Court’s application of the Brody Act, which states that the term “PERSON… when referring to the victim of a criminal homicide or assault, means a human being, including an unborn child in utero at any stage of development, regardless of viability.” The Alabama Supreme Court affirmed the application of the Brody Act.

Justice Tom Parker, “concurring specially” with the court’s decision, emphasized the rights of unborn children under Alabama law and argued that Roe v. Wade, the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion nationwide, is a “legal anomaly and logical fallacy.”

“In Roe, the United States Supreme Court, without historical or constitutional support, carved out an exception to the rights of unborn children and prohibited states from recognizing an unborn child’s inalienable right to life when that right conflicts with a woman’s ‘right’ to abortion,” Justice Parker wrote. “The judicially created exception of Roe is an aberration to the natural law and the positive and common law of the states.”

Justice Parker urged the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn Roe.

Justice Tom Paker. 

“I urge the United States Supreme Court to overrule this increasingly isolated exception to the rights of unborn children,” he wrote.

“As states like Alabama continue to provide greater and more consistent protection for the dignity of the lives of unborn children, the Roe exception is a stark legal and logical contrast that grows ever more alienated from and adverse to the legal fabric of America,” he added.

According to the report, Jessie Livell Phillips v. State of Alabama is the first case “in the State of Alabama in which one of the capital-murder victims is an unborn child.”

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