JEFFERSON CITY — State Sen. Kurt Schaefer, R-Columbia, announced that Planned Parenthood has agreed to produce documents through their lawyer in response to the Senate subpoena issued in November 2015 by Senate Pro Tempore, Ron Richard, R-Joplin.
“All we have wanted to learn from the start of this investigation is, what are the policies and procedures for disposing of fetal tissue,” Schaefer said. “While Planned Parenthood attempted to block our inquiry, I’m satisfied with their decision to produce documents so we can continue to find out what happens to fetal tissue in Missouri.”
Senator Schaefer said that in exchange for Planned Parenthood’s compliance, the Senate will suspend contempt proceedings at this time. The proceedings began after Mary Kogut of Planned Parenthood and Dr. James Miller of Pathology Services, Inc. refused to testify and produce documents requested by Senate Interim Sanctity of Life Committee last fall. Subpoenas were signed by the Senate president pro tempore in response, and last week the Senate adopted resolutions, which recognize that both Kogut and Miller failed to comply with official Senate requests and appear to have no lawful excuse for their noncompliance. Both were required to appear before the Senate Committee of the Whole on Monday, April 25, 2016.
Senator Schaefer said he also learned that Dr. Miller of Pathology Services, Inc. will be invoking his constitutional right against self-incrimination under the Fifth Amendment, instead of turning over documents to the Senate.
“I am disappointed that Dr. Miller has refused to cooperate in the Senate’s ongoing investigation into what happens to aborted fetuses after they leave Planned Parenthood,” Schaefer said. “Since last fall, we have learned of inconsistencies from previously received testimony, and Dr. Miller could have aided in answering vital questions.”
Schaefer said the next step will be to form a bipartisan team to review the documents produced by Planned Parenthood.