Indiana News

Feticide, Murder Case Heard By Indiana Court of Appeals

12/13/2011

Bei Bei Shuai
Bei Bei Shuai

The attorney for the Indianapolis woman accused of killing her baby by taking rat poison while pregnant has asked the Indiana Court of Appeals to throw out the case against her.

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Previously, a Marion Superior Court judge ruled that Chinese immigrant Bei Bei Shuai should not be let out of jail while awaiting trial on murder and feticide charges due to strong presumption of guilt. Bond is rare in murder cases.

Shuai's attorney, Linda Pence, argued Tuesday her client ingested rat poison to kill herself -- not the fetus.

"Indiana recognizes that suicide is not unlawful," Pence said. "It is a public health issue best left for professionals to treat and care for."

But the state's attorney, Ellen Meilaender, argued that Shuai "knowingly killed a viable fetus," which would allow for murder or feticide charges under Indiana law.

Some health care groups have expressed outrage over the charges. They argue Shuai's prosecution could keep other women from seeking treatment for mental health and other issues.

There's no timeline for the Indiana Court of Appeals to issue its decision.

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