Document Detail


Strangulation of pregnant woman leads to one first-degree murder indictment for the death of the mother: a medicolegal reconsideration of maternal/fetal/homicide.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  11444662     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Abstract/OtherAbstract:
A Hispanic woman, 7 1/4, to 7 1/2 lunar months pregnant, was strangled to death by her common-law husband. After receiving information from an informant, a reporter uncovered the remains of the woman and fetus in a grave in a river bank near Eloy, Arizona. The remains were submitted by local law enforcement officials to the forensic pathologist for medicolegal examination. After this analysis, they were turned over to the consulting forensic anthropologist for positive identification of the mother and for fetal age determination to assess possible viability. During the 1970s and 1980s, viability for a fetus of this age was thought possible, although not probable. Prosecution of the common-law husband on the charge of first-degree murder of his wife was successful, whereas a comparable charge for the fetus was not sought. Many issues are raised, including gestational age estimation in relation to fetal viability. Fetal age is reassessed by means of measurements from diaphyseal lengths. These measurements allowed for comparability of fetal age estimations between published studies, with discussion of changing dates of fetal viability made possible through technologic advances. Because fetal viability changes with these advances, it is necessary to establish and update the guidelines for medicolegal practice.
Authors:
A K Huxley; R C Froede; W H Birkby
Publication Detail:
Type:  Case Reports; Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The American journal of forensic medicine and pathology     Volume:  22     ISSN:  0195-7910     ISO Abbreviation:  Am J Forensic Med Pathol     Publication Date:  2001 Mar 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2001-07-10     Completed Date:  2001-12-04     Revised Date:  2011-02-02    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8108948     Medline TA:  Am J Forensic Med Pathol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  51-4     Citation Subset:  IM    
Affiliation:
Department of Anthropology, Tucson, Arizona 85721, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Descriptor/Qualifier:
Adult
Female
Fetus / pathology*
Forensic Anthropology
Homicide*
Humans
Male
Pregnancy
Spouses*

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine


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