Last month, TheBlaze told you about a Tampa, Florida, man who is accused of secretly slipping his girlfriend an abortion drug -- an act that killed the couple's unborn baby. Weeks after the shocking story came to light, a new detail has emerged.
Prosecutors now allege that John Andrew Welden, 28, killed his unborn child in an effort to hide a secret relationship. See, he was purportedly covertly dating Remee Lee, the woman he impregnated -- and he was allegedly hiding her identity from another long-time lover (identified as Tara Fillinger).
As we previously reported, prosecutors claim that Welden switched the label on an abortion pill bottle to make it look like Amoxicillin, a common antibiotic. After the woman he impregnated, Lee, 26, took the drug, she purportedly miscarried.
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It was in March that Welden apparently first found out that the woman was pregnant. While he purportedly wanted her to have an abortion, Lee decided to keep the baby and allegedly said that she would care for the child on her own.
Since she didn't have medical insurance, Welden sent her to his father, Dr. Stephen Welden, an OB/GYN physician. Lee was told that the baby was healthy.
Prosecutors argue, though, that the expectant father was intent on protecting his relationship with Fillinger -- and on ending the pregnancy.
Officials argue, as per the Tampa Tribune, that Welden's "desire to prevent Tara from learning of the pregnancy and his relationship with Lee provides a significant and strong motive for the defendant's criminal actions in this case."
The following text message conversation seemingly substantiates the notion that the young man wanted nothing to do with the pregnancy:
In March 23, Lee sent Welden a text message about the unborn baby: "I thought of a nice name for whatever it is. Memphis Remington Welden. Kids gonna be a bad ass!"
Welden responded: "Oh God I want to die ... Are you serious Remee please don't do this I beg you"
"Don't do what?" she texted back. "Take responsibility for my actions? This isn't about us anymore. It is not it's fault, why should it have to die? You must not be who I thought you were if you are asking me to murder our child."
According to prosecutors, Welden then decided to step in to prevent the baby from coming to term.
Authorities believe that Weldon forged his father's name in an effort to obtain Misoprostol (Cytotec), an abortion drug that is used for termination purposes. WebMD describes the drug as, "a prostaglandin medicine used to terminate a pregnancy by starting labor."
It is alleged that Welden told the woman she had a bacterial infection and then gave her the drug. Lee later took the pill, subsequently had stomach pain and bleeding and, upon going to the hospital, realized that the baby had died, Assistant District Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow claims.
"In my years as a prosecutor, this case is one of the most shocking and premeditated cases I’ve seen," Muldrow told Judge Anthony Porcelli back in May.
Here's how WPTV-TV recaps the story:
Lee said when she learned she was pregnant, Welden took her to see his father, who is an obstetrician in Lutz. A sonogram and blood test confirmed Lee was six-weeks pregnant.
The next day, Welden called his girlfriend with bad news. Her blood test apparently showed she had a bacterial infection and she would need to take Amoxicillin to clear it up.
On Good Friday, Lee said Welden showed up at her Tampa home with a care package that included the bottle of antibiotics. The label said the pills were Amoxycillin.
"He told me to keep taking them. I was supposed to take three a day for days," she recalled of Welden's instructions.
Welden could face life behind bars without parole if he is found guilty of murder under the "Protection of Unborn Children Act," a federal statute. He also faces ramifications for tampering with a prescription.
The prosecution claims that Welden admitted to giving the woman cytotec during a phone call that authorities recorded. The Tribune adds more accusations, as highlighted by Muldrow last month:
“He admits throughout the recording that he knew the pills were going to cause contractions,” Muldrow said. He also “confesses to the premeditated nature of the crime.”
Muldrow said Welden “confesses that he had tampered with the pill bottle, that he put a fake label on the bottle.” Muldrow said Welden said he used a label maker to make the bogus label.
Muldrow said Welden at some point tried to retrieve the bottle, claiming there was a problem with the medicine and he wanted to get his money back. Muldrow said this was an attempt by Welden to tamper with evidence.
In addition to the criminal charges against him, Lee is also seeking at least $15,000 in damages. The prosecutor told the judge that the case "shocks the conscience."
(H/T: The Tampa Tribune)