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Pressing his case

LIFE | Pro-lifer sues feds over “malicious” investigation

Mark Houck Thomas More Society

Pressing his case
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Less than two years after pro-life father and sidewalk ­counselor Mark Houck was charged under the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act, Houck is suing the federal government.

The 40 Days for Life Institute of Law & Justice filed the lawsuit May 20 on behalf of Houck and his family. It takes federal agencies to task for allegedly mistreating the Houcks in a now-dismissed FACE case that stemmed from an altercation Houck had outside a Philadelphia abortion facility. In that 2021 incident, Houck pushed a pro-abortion escort who was harassing his 12-year-old son. Local law enforcement did not press charges, but nearly a year later, a federal grand jury indicted Houck, and armed government agents arrested him in front of his family early one morning (see “Locked and loaded,” Jan. 28, 2023). Another jury acquitted him in January 2023.

The lawsuit claims the government initiated a “malicious” investigation against Houck for the incident. It says his arrest by federal agents at gunpoint was needless and traumatized him, his wife, and their children. The lawsuit requests that the court award the Houcks with hundreds of thousands of dollars as compensation for mistreatment by federal officials. The lawsuit lists 19 additional FACE cases brought against pro-life defendants since 2011..

Lethal tally

Abortions in England and Wales hit a record high in 2022, according to new data from the U.K. government. The number of unborn babies killed by abortion among residents of England and Wales that year totaled 251,377, a 17 percent increase from the year before, with chemical abortions accounting for 86 percent of the total.

According to the 2022 data, 3,124 babies died by abortion specifically because they received diagnoses of physical or mental abnormalities. Eight percent occurred at or after 24 weeks of pregnancy. Parents chose abortion for 760 babies after receiving a Down syndrome diagnosis.

Since 2020, the government has allowed women in England and Wales to take abortion pills at home after a phone consultation, without any doctor supervision. Abortion is legal in England and Wales for broad social reasons until 24 weeks unless the pregnancy poses a risk to the life or health of the woman or if the child has a disability. The country’s National Health Service funded 99 percent of the total abortions in 2022. —L.S.

Tupungato/Getty Images

Abortion campaign plans

House Majority PAC, a political action committee dedicated to electing Democrats to the U.S. House, announced it’s putting $100 million toward abortion-focused messaging. In a May 29 memo, the super PAC claimed Republican focus on banning abortion cost the GOP in the 2022 midterms. To beat the GOP this election cycle, House Majority said its Reproductive Freedom Accountability Fund will put $85 million toward pro-abortion media messaging, $10 million toward mobilizing voters, and $5 million toward public opinion research. —L.S.

Leah Savas

Leah is the life beat reporter for WORLD News Group. She is a graduate of Hillsdale College and the World Journalism Institute and resides in Grand Rapids, Mich., with her husband, Stephen.



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