Pregnant Woman In Jail On Murder Charges Files Emergency Petition For Her Unborn Baby To Be Released

unborn child in jail petition to be released florida
Source: Unsplash; Miami-Dade Corrections Department

Feb. 21 2023, Updated 2:49 p.m. ET

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A Florida woman in custody on murder charges has filed an emergency petition to have the unborn baby she is currently carrying released from detention, officials said.

Natalia Harrell, 24, was arrested last July on a second-degree murder charge and the petition was filed last week on behalf of the still-to-be-delivered baby, WTVJ reported.

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"An unborn child is a person. A person has constitutional rights and one of them is the right not to be deprived of liberty without due process of law," Attorney William Norris, who is representing the unborn baby, explained to the station.

The petition alleges the unborn child hasn’t received adequate prenatal care while Harrell, who is around eight months along, has been held without bond.

Harris said he is “asserting the right of someone who is a person who has not been considered in the decision to incarcerate his mother.”

The petition also claims the Miami-Dade Corrections Department didn’t bring Harrell to a scheduled prenatal medical appointment at a local hospital and that her last visit with an OB-GYN was in October 2022.

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Prison officials said in a statement: "Miami-Dade County Corrections and Rehabilitation partners with Jackson Health System to provide healthcare to the inmates in our custody, and we are committed to ensuring all inmates receive professional, timely medical care and all appropriate treatment. We are conducting a full review of the health services offered and received to ensure that all prenatal care being provided in our custody is appropriate."

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The petition states the unborn baby hasn’t been charged with a crime and should be released immediately since their due process rights have been violated since they are considered a person under Florida's constitution, WTVJ reported.


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