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Texas lawyer accused of putting abortion drug in wife’s water

Mason Herring, 38, was charged with assaulting a pregnant person and assault-force induction to have an abortion

Andrea Blanco
Friday 11 November 2022 19:34 GMT
Related: Kentucky Voters Reject Constitutional Amendment on Abortion

A Texas attorney is facing charges for allegedly trying to induce his estranged wife’s abortion by spiking her water.

Mason Herring, 38, was charged with assaulting a pregnant person and assault-force induction to have an abortion, Harris County Assistant District Attorney Anthony Osso told ABC13. Mr Herring, a partner of the Herring Law Firm, is accused of putting the drug Cyrux, which contains Misoprostol, in his wife’s water.

Although the victim became suspicious when she noticed the water was a bit cloudy, she drank it after Mr Herring insisted that she should drink it to keep hydrated. She then became extremely ill and had to be taken to the hospital, Mr Osso said.

Misoprostol, a medication to prevent ulcers, is also used in combination with another pill during medication abortions, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. A pill of Misoprostol “works to empty the uterus by causing cramping and bleeding, similar to an early miscarriage.”

Although it is unclear how much of the drug the woman took, she was able to recover and went on to have a healthy, albeit premature, delivery. She claimed Mr Herring attempted to convince her to take drinks prepared by him on several occasions.

If found guilty, Mr Herring could face up to 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine. He is the first person in Texas to face a charge of forced induction to have an abortion after the statute was introduced earlier this year when abortions were banned in the state, ABC13 reports.

(Mason Herring/Harris County )

According to Mr Osso, several water samples were tested in an out-of-state lab, with two of them returning positive for Misoprostol.

“It’s manipulative,” Mr Osso told ABC13. “It’s pre-meditated. What we are alleging Mr Herring did, which we believe the evidence supports, is a pretty heinous act. To do that to someone who trusts you, it’s taking advantage of that trust.”

At the time of the incident, Mr Herring, an energy and natural resources attorney, was not living with his wife. The couple reportedly separated in early 2022 but were trying to work out things before Mr Herring received news that his wife was pregnant in February.

“My understanding is that it wasn’t well-received by [Herring],” Mr Osso told ABC13. “That came out through marriage counseling, as well as through text messages later on.”

On 17 May, Mr Herring allegedly told his wife that she needed to stay hydrated and gave her a glass of water.

Although the woman initially thought the exchange was bizarre, she drank the water and Mr Herirng took the cup with him.

After she was hospitalised on the day she drank the water, the woman became wary of Mr Herring’s true feelings about her pregnancy. She set up cameras around the house, which allegedly recorded Mr Herring adding powder into a glass.

He was charged and arrested after his wife contacted police with evidence. Mr Herring’s next court hearing was scheduled for 2 December.

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