October 16, 1998. Columbus, Ohio.
A group of about 50 pro-lifers protested the opening of Columbus, Ohio's newest abortion clinic today. The clinic is located at Cleveland Avenue Professional Center, 5910 Cleveland Avenue. Owned and operated by Mervyn Samuel, M.D., the practice is surrounded by legitimate businesses, dentists, insurance agents, optometrists, realtors, builders, and churches, as well as residential houses.
Pro-choice clinic escorts--men with green and purple hair, women with numerous tattoos, and piercings in their noses and lips--were already on the scene to "greet" the pro-life protesters. The pro-choice group, from Antioch College, consisted of self-proclaimed homosexuals, lesbians and vampires. A police officer said they receive credit for coming out to events such as this.
Perhaps their education at the College aided the pro-choicers in their tactics--without warning, they turned on strategically located sprinklers. The desired effect was to soak pro-lifers, including small children and mothers, on a chilly, 40 degree October morning. The strategy failed, however, as even one seven year old girl said, "They don't really think we'd run away, just because of a sprinkler, do they?"
Unfortunately, while some pro-choice escorts played cruel tricks on small children, others adopted an even more aggressive tactic. Marjorie Rankin, a pro-lifer and mother of a once-jailed baby rescuer, parked her car at the dentist's office next door to the clinic. Rankin is 5 feet, 1 inch tall and 77 years old. She proceeded to walk across the clinic parking lot, on her way to the sidewalk where pro-lifers were holding signs. Rankin was not carrying a sign, speaking, or acting confrontational in any way. She simply intended to cross a parking lot-- which at any other time, for any other person, could have meant she was a potential customer of the Professional Center.
She had barely set foot in the clinic lot--perhaps less than a car length--when she was violently body-slammed in the chest 3 times, by an pro-choice escort's chest. This was done in a karate-like style: the attacker bent backwards, then performed a quick chest thrust forwards. Marjorie was pushed back towards the curb with each thrust. She had to grab her attacker's jacket once to avoid falling backwards.
Marjorie almost tripped backwards over the curb. The escort was 31 year old Veronica Speedwell of Chicago (according to testimony that one of the other escorts gave the police).
Speedwell told Marjorie she was trespassing, and that they were going to call the police and have her arrested.
Marjorie said, "Jesus loves you, and I love you, and He wants you to accept Him as your Lord and Savior."
Speedwell assaulted Marjorie twice more with her chest. Then Speedwell fled the area before police arrived.
Medics came and checked Marjorie at the scene, who had began having chest pains after the assault. A Columbus police officer, Steven Kirby, took the report for "Simple Assault." Assault charges were filed that day against the clinic escort.
The local news media called the assault "a minor altercation" and a "confrontation." If they could have filmed a 31 year old using body-slamming karate on a 77 year old, it may have been reported differently.
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