Share This Page

Man's trick allegedly caused ex's abortion

| Thursday, May 16, 2013, 9:30 p.m.

TAMPA — The 28-year-old son of a Florida fertility doctor has been charged by federal authorities with tricking his girlfriend into taking a pill used to induce labor and cause an abortion, killing the embryo she was carrying.

John Andrew Welden was indicted on Tuesday by a federal grand jury on charges of product tampering and first-degree murder and faces up to life in prison if convicted of the murder charge. He's also the defendant in a lawsuit filed in state court by his ex-girlfriend, 26-year-old Remee Lee.

“Whenever a woman is robbed of her ability to give birth and have a child, I don't think there's any greater harm you can cause somebody,” said Lee's attorney, Gil Sanchez. “She's devastated. She still can't believe this happened to her.”

According to court documents, the couple met in mid-2012 and became romantically involved. Lee became pregnant in February 2013 and was elated about her pregnancy when she told Welden the news. Welden, however, urged Lee not to have the baby.

In late March, the records say, Lee went to the office of Dr. Stephen Welden, her boyfriend's father, for an exam.

Court records say Welden told Lee that his father had discovered she had a bacterial infection and had prescribed an antibiotic, Amoxicillan, to treat her.

Lee and her attorney — along with federal prosecutors — say Welden forged his father's signature on a prescription for Cytotec and relabeled a pill bottle as “Amoxicillin.” Cytotec, known also as misoprostol, is a drug used to induce labor.

It is typically taken in conjunction with another drug, mifepristone, to cause an abortion during the first nine weeks of pregnancy.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.