Massachusetts Abortionist Sentenced to Jail For Woman’s Death

By Susan Brinkmann, OCDS
Staff Journalist

A Massachusetts abortionist was sentenced to six months in jail after pleading guilty to involuntary manslaughter in the death of 22 year-old woman who died from complications during an abortion.

Dr. Rapin Osathanondh was sentenced Tuesday for his role in the 2007 death of Laura Hope Smith, 22, a resident of Sandwich, Massachusetts. Osathanondh admitted to behaving in a wanton and reckless manner during the abortion procedure that cost Smith her life. Apparently, the doctor allowed his untrained receptionist to administer the anesthesia during the proceedings, and admitted that he did not call for emergency assistance in a timely manner when Smith began to suffer complications during the procedure. By the time Smith was transported to a nearby hospital, she was pronounced dead on arrival.

“You, sir, destroyed a precious flower that grew and … blossomed in our lives, not accidentally, but purposely,” said Tom Smith, Laura’s father, to Osathanondh during the court proceedings.

Osathanondh has already surrendered his medical license and closed his two abortion clinics. He is likely to serve three months in a county jail after which time he is expected to be paroled. He must then serve nine months under home confinement with an electronic monitoring device, followed by three years of probation. In addition, Osathanondh is barred from practicing medicine and teaching, according to a plea agreement that was reached after a day of in-court negotiations.

Also settled was a civil suit filed by Smith’s mother, Eileen Smith, in which Osathanondh agreed to pay the family a substantial sum of money as a punitive measure.

“Today, justice was done,” said Troy Newman, president of the pro-life organization Operation Rescue, who helped advise Eileen Smith after her daughter’s death and encouraged her to file complaints with the medical board and prosecutors.

“This conviction is an object lesson to prosecutors across the nation that abortionists can and should be held criminally accountable to the law for the sake of justice and public safety. There are abortionists out there right now who are endangering the lives of women who should be joining Osathanondh in jail. We hope today’s sentencing will encourage prosecutors to file criminal charges against abortionists who are breaking the law. Leaving these kinds of cases to the medical boards and civil courts is simply not good enough.”

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