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Judge: John Stargel
Court: Florida 2nd District Court of Appeals
Defendant's Attorney: Office of the Attorney General
Description: Tallahassee, Florida civil rights lawyers represented Plaintiff seeking to obtain a medically induced abortion.
Jane Doe, a 17-year-old high school student sought to have an abortion without her parent's consent.
"The minor, identified only as Jane Doe to protect her privacy, is a high-school junior who said in the case that she wants to go into the military and ultimately become a nurse. In seeking the parental-consent waiver, she said she was too young to become a parent, did not have sufficient income and would not be able to pursue her goal of going into the military, according to the ruling."
“The majority discounts most of the trial court’s concerns regarding Doe’s credibility and demeanor as a witness, overall intelligence, emotional development and stability, and ability to accept responsibility,” Stargel wrote “The trial court is in a unique position to determine the credibility and demeanor of the witness. This court has long recognized that the trial court’s findings, including those regarding the minor’s demeanor, may support a determination that the minor did not prove that she was sufficiently mature to decide whether to terminate her pregnancy.”
Outcome: The 2-1 ruling Tuesday by a panel of the 2nd District Court of Appeal overturned a Hillsborough County circuit judge’s order denying a request to waive a requirement in state law that minors receive parental consent before having abortions.