The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals today upheld the second conviction of a Lufkin man in the gruesome stomach-stomping deaths of his girlfriend’s unborn twin fetuses.
Attorneys for Gerald Flores, now 22, argued that a recent Texas law that applies capital murder charges to the killing of a fetus was unconstitutional, in part because it has a religious and not a secular purpose. (Flores had told authorities in 2004 that he and his 16-year-old girlfriend decided to terminate her pregnancy by having Flores step on her stomach. For more on the case, read our story here.)
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But in her opinion, reflecting the Court’s unanimous decision, Presiding Judge Sharon Keller wrote, “Mere consistency between a statute and religious tenets, however, does not render a statute unconstitutional. Otherwise, no law against theft or murder could pass constitutional muster, because those laws are consistent with religious strictures such as the Ten Commandments.” Go here for the entire opinion. – Craig Malisow