The director of a Tuscaloosa, Ala., abortion clinic has been arrested for disorderly conduct after allegedly threatening pro-life activists peacefully waving signs on a public sidewalk, authorities have confirmed.
About 200 members of the pro-life organization Operation Save America arrived at the West Alabama Women’s Clinic after notifying local police of their plans, but the clinic’s director emerged almost immediately in a furious attempt to banish the Christians from the neighborhood.
“We were just standing there holding signs,” OSA spokeswoman Pat McEwen told WND, “and she came out and began threatening people, harassing them, and insisting ‘You will be arrested today!’”
“One of our members said, quietly, ‘No, ma’am, you will be arrested today.’”
According to McEwen, one pro-lifer was likely sharing the gospel with the director, telling her, “God has a plan for your life, and it’s not this.”
The director was identified only as “Gloria,” said McEwen, who noted she appeared annoyed with the gospel message and pro-life presence and began to cause a disturbance, screaming at the pro-lifers and shaking her fists in their faces.
A local police officer, attempting to prevent an altercation, asked the woman to stop screaming, noting that the police did not want a disturbance.
“I will do what I want,” the clinic director replied. “I will not obey you.”
At that point, McEwan says, the policeman arrested the woman, handcuffed her, and drove her to the police station.
Capt. Greg Kosloff, spokesman for the Tuscaloosa Police Department, confirmed that the woman was arrested, then released after posting a $500 bond, and will be summoned for a court date in the future.
After the woman was taken to the station, he said, “There were no more incidents. The group stayed where they were supposed to, and the day ended peacefully.”
McEwan affirms the group’s attention to the law.
“People always say that we’re the lawbreakers,” she said. “But we never break a law unless it breaks God’s law.” Even the little things are important, she says. “We always try to be careful about speeding and not stepping on private property and getting permits…”
In a press release, OSA praised Tuscaloosa police for the proper use of authority.
“In many cities the God-given authority is used wrongfully – to oppress Christians and squash 1st Amendment rights,” the group said. “In ONE city, Tuscaloosa, Ala., the police use their authority correctly, defending the innocent and keeping order.”
McEwan echoed the praise, calling the police force “immensely polite and gracious.”
While Operation Save America will be in Alabama for the entire week, sharing the pro-life agenda at several clinics and churches, McEwan assured there will be no disturbances from her ranks.
“The spirit of Christ loves order,” she said. “It’s the spirit of Jezebel that hates authority.”
The clinic director was not identified by more than her first name, and the website for the business does not provide that information. It lists only Dr. Louis T. Payne as the medical director.
However, it does assure potential customers that “West Alabama Women’s Center was the only clinic in Alabama with no defincies (sic) during the 2006 State Health Department inspection.”
Jennifer Carden is an editorial assistant for WorldNetDaily