New York's abortion law, the so-called Reproductive Health Act, gave some judicial relief to a man accused of murdering his pregnant girlfriend, according to the New York Post.
Anthony Hobson turned himself in to authorities on Friday, facing second-degree murder charges in the stabbing death of 35-year-old Jennifer Irigoyen, who was five months pregnant.
Hobson was initially going to be charged with second-degree abortion in addition to the murder charge, but because the criminal charge of abortion was repealed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo's abortion law, Hobson avoids the additional charge.
Hobson was reportedly seen Sunday on surveillance cameras dragging Irigoyen from her apartment building and down a stairwell, as she shouted "He's got a knife! He's going to kill the baby!" according to a witness.
He allegedly stabbed her repeatedly in the torso, abdomen and neck. She and her unborn child died at the hospital.
How did the law effect the charge?
The Reproductive Health Act, which legalizes abortions beyond 24 weeks in situations to protect the health of the mother, also removed abortion from the criminal code.
Republicans in the New York state Legislature fought for abortion to remain under the criminal code in the law, but were unsuccessful.
State Sen. Catharine Young said removing abortion from the penal code was "an assault on a woman's fundamental right to pregnancy." State Sen. Andrew Lanza said the change causes people who assault non-pregnant women to be treated "precisely the same under our penal code as punching a woman with the intent of ending her pregnancy and in fact doing so."