Colorado woman convicted of cutting fetus from stranger’s womb
A Colorado jury on Tuesday convicted a woman of attempted murder and assault for stabbing a pregnant stranger and cutting her fetus from her womb, after luring the victim to her home with an online advertisement for free maternity clothes.
Dynel Catrece Lane, 35, was also found guilty in a Boulder courtroom of a charge of unlawfully terminating a pregnancy stemming from the March 2015 attack on Michelle Wilkins, 27.
Wilkins, who was seven months pregnant, survived the attack but her unborn baby girl died.
The case renewed discussion of whether a fetus is a person and whether termination of a pregnancy can ever be considered murder. Prosecutors filed a charge of unlawful termination of a pregnancy against Lane after the Boulder County Coroner ruled the unborn child was a fetus rather than a baby because it had not taken a breath outside the womb.
Lane showed little emotion in court on Tuesday. Wilkins also was present for the verdict and dabbed at her eyes with a tissue as it was read.
Boulder County District Court Judge Maria Berkenkotter set sentencing in the case for April 29. If the judge imposes consecutive sentences on Lane, she could face a maximum sentence of 140 years in prison.
(Reporting by Keith Coffman, Writing by Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Sharon Bernstein and Cynthia Osterman)