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Federal Judge Halts Texas Law on Women’s Health Program

The Texas Attorney General has appealed a federal judge’s order stopping the state from banning Planned Parenthood clinics from a women’s health program.

Attorney General Greg Abbott filed the notice of appeal just hours after U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel said Texas could not ban clinics affiliated with abortion providers from receiving state funds.

Yeakel’s injunction said the eight independent Planned Parenthood clinics had provided sufficient evidence to stop the law because it imposes unconstitutional limits on the freedom of association of health care providers. Yeakel said he would hold a full trial and offer a final decision afterward.

Texas Governor Rick Perry issued the following statement:

Texas has a long history of protecting life, and we are confident in Attorney General Abbott’s appeal to defend the will of Texans and our state law, which prohibits taxpayer funds from supporting abortion providers and affiliates in the Women’s Health Program. We will continue to work with the Attorney General to pursue all available legal options.”

No state funding goes to organizations that provide abortions. This law took the additional step of not allowing legally separate clinics from affiliating with abortion providers.

Authorities Look for Clues in Identifying Body

Harrison County 911 dispatchers received a call at 10:30 AM on April 30, 2012 regarding the discovery of a deceased person on Marks Hill Road and Frierson Road in Marshall.

When deputies arrived they were met by the witness who stated she was looking for plum trees and smelled a strong odor in the area. Deputies were unable to identify the body due to advanced decomposition of the body. Judge Kent Alford ordered an autopsy to determine the identity and cause of death.

The body was removed to Forensic Services in Tyler.

Sheriff’s Investigators and Marshall Police are reviewing all missing person records to aid in identifying this body.

If any person has information to add to this incident they are encouraged to contact the Harrison County Sheriff’s Office Investigation Section at 903-923-4000.

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