Atlanta lawyers will rep anyone prosecuted for abortions for free

Steve Sadow, defense attorney, is offering free legal services to anyone who is prosecuted due to abortions.

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Steve Sadow, defense attorney, is offering free legal services to anyone who is prosecuted due to abortions.

Many Georgia law enforcement agencies taking wait and see approach

Steve Sadow knew a decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade was coming. He wants to make sure anyone prosecuted because of an abortion gets the best defense possible, free of charge.

“If a doctor believes that it is appropriate to violate the law, at least as written, I want to be there to defend them because they need somebody in their corner and that is what I do,” he said Friday, hours after the Supreme Court released its opinion.

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Sadow, who has represented various high profile clients, said he feels strongly about women’s rights to privacy and their reproductive rights. With laws throughout the country going into effect following the Supreme Court decision, Sadow said he is not sure what each state will do but he will be ready to defend anyone prosecuted as a result of the decision.

“I just wanted to put it out there so that if there is a doctor that feels strongly enough about this, they know that there is somebody that has the experience that I have and is willing to come in and fight for them,” Sadow said. “No one will leave them hanging.”

Attorney Drew Findling issued a similar statement following the decision.

“The Findling Law Firm is committed to fighting to restore a woman’s right to choose which has been destroyed by the Supreme Court in the Dobbs decision,” he said. “We will defend anyone prosecuted under Georgia’s anti-abortion ‘heartbeat law’ free of charge and do everything we can to help right this wrong through advocacy across the country.”

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Law enforcement agencies across the state are taking a wait-and-see approach in enforcing the Georgia abortion law until it actually goes into effect. House Bill 481, which was signed into law by Gov. Brian Kemp in 2019, outlaws most abortions when a doctor can detect fetal cardiac activity, which is typically around six weeks of pregnancy.

The law has been stalled by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, which was awaiting the Supreme Court decision. On Friday afternoon, Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr said his office had filed a notice in the 11th Circuit requesting a reversal of the District Court’s decision and allow the law to go into effect.

Savannah Police Department spokeswoman Bianca Johnson said since abortion is still legal in Georgia, the department can’t speak on how it would enforce the law.

The Bibb County Sheriff’s Office plans to check with the District Attorney’s Office for guidance once the law goes into effect, a spokesperson said. Columbia County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Steve Morris said the department would comment on enforcement once the law goes into effect.

DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Cynthia Baugh Williams said the agency’s mandate is the enforcement of the law and individuals are arrested based on warrants, as directed by the courts. Williams did not specify if there will be any increased priority once if the abortion law goes into effect. DeKalb County District Attorney Sherry Boston said that she won’t be prosecuting anyone based on House Bill 481.

The Atlanta City Council requested the Atlanta Police Department make any calls and investigations regarding the violation of the state’s abortion law their lowest priority. Fulton County DA Fani Willis said she will not be using her office resources to prosecute anyone based on women’s personal healthcare choices.

Attorney Sadow said he is willing to defend any doctor throughout the country free of charge. He will only charge travel expenses if he has to travel long distances. Sadow said he was optimistic about the fact district attorneys throughout the state and country have already stated, regardless of the law, they won’t prosecute anyone for violating abortion laws.

“I think they are doing the right thing. I may not see eye to eye with them on other things, but I think on this one, they are doing the right thing,” he said. “If a prosecutor somewhere wants to try to punish them, I’ll be there to protect them to the extent that is humanly possible.”