Texas man takes legal action against ex-partner who travelled to Colorado for abortion

The woman reportedly travelled out to Colorado for the abortion earlier this year

Dan Gooding
Friday 03 May 2024 18:11 BST
The woman reportedly travelled to Colorado from Texas for an abortion earlier this year
The woman reportedly travelled to Colorado from Texas for an abortion earlier this year (Getty Images)

A Texas woman who travelled out of the state to get an abortion is being threatened with legal action by her ex-boyfriend, who also wants to target those who helped her.

The unnamed woman reportedly sought the abortion, legally, in Colorado in late February and when her ex-partner Collin Davis found out about her plans, he retained anti-abortion attorney Jonathan Mitchell.

The lawyer threatened a full investigation, The Washington Post reported, should the woman proceed with the abortion — which she did.

“People need to understand that it is not a crime to leave Texas or any other state in the country for an abortion,” Molly Duane, senior staff attorney at the Center for Reproductive Rights, told the Post.

However, that hasn’t stopped Mr Davis and his attorney from pursuing legal action against the woman and those they claim were  “involved in the killing of his unborn child,” a letter seen by the outlet said.

Mr Davis’ argument appears to be that those who helped his ex-girlfriend are the ones who broke Texas’ strict abortion laws, which do allow citizens to sue anyone who “aids or abets” an illegal abortion, even if the woman herself cannot be sued.

Anti-abortion rights supporters take part in a "Rally for Life" march and celebration outside the Texas State Capitol on January 27, 2024, in Austin, Texas. (AFP via Getty Images)

Crossing state lines to get an abortion is still legal nationwide, however, so there remains a challenge for Mr Davis and his attorney Mr Mitchell. District attorneys told the Post that many abortion laws are difficult to enforce.

The Independent has approached the lawyer, who was instrumental in ensuring Texas’ current abortion ban, for further comment but he is yet to respond.

He told the Post that “fathers of aborted foetuses can sue for wrongful death in states with abortion bans, even if the abortion occurs out-of-state”.

Mr Mitchell has had experience in a similar case, where a man is suing three women over an abortion which took place in the weeks after Roe v Wade was overturned in 2022.

In that case, the woman’s friends are accused of helping her get hold of abortion medication, with text messages between the women used as evidence.

Protestors demonstrate at the March for Reproductive Rights organized by Women's March L.A. on April 15, 2023 in Los Angeles, California (Getty Images)

The Center for Reproductive Rights claims these cases show growing attempts by anti-abortionists to restrict women’s rights even further.

“Across the country, we are seeing attempts to trap people in states where abortion is criminalised,” Nancy Northup, President and CEO of the Center, said.

“The anti-abortion movement wants to deny abortion access nationwide, and this is a terrifying step in that direction.”

Abortion remains a big issue heading for the 2024 election, with multiple states seeing fights over near-total bans.

A federal judge recently ruled that some of North Carolina’s policies on abortion pulls were illegal, while in Arizona a Civil War-era ban will be overturned but it could be months before restrictions are removed.

Around half of US states have heavily restrictive abortion laws, with President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris vowing to fight these rules heading into November’s election.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in