Photo: Getty Images
  /  08.17.2022

On Monday (Aug. 15), Judge Jennifer J. Frydrychowicz denied a 16-year-old girl the ability to proceed with an abortion. The teen, named Jane Doe 22-B in court documents, sought permission through Florida’s First District Court of Appeals in Escambia County. Judge Frydrychowicz ruled that the girl failed to prove “that she was sufficiently mature to decide whether to terminate her pregnancy.”

Around 10 weeks into Doe’s pregnancy, she requested court approval to go through with the abortion process — which is necessary as a minor. Unfortunately for the teen, Florida bans abortions after 15 weeks, leaving Doe little time to file an appeal. Court documents state that the young girl is “almost seventeen years old and parentless.” In addition to still being in school and unemployed, “the father is unable to assist her.” According to the New York Post, the teen lives with a legal guardian who supports her decision to terminate the pregnancy.

Documents add that the teen is “pursuing a GED with involvement in a program designed to assist young women who have experienced trauma in their lives.” Doe recently lost a close friend. Sources say this could add to her stress and inability to care for a young child. The outlet reports that under state statute, minors must be able to convey they are mature enough to decide to terminate a pregnancy. The teen noted she “is not ready to have a baby.”

In a separate opinion, Judge Scott Makar weighed in on the case. He said, “Reading between the lines, it appears that the trial court wanted to give the minor, who was under extra stress due to a friend’s death, additional time to express a keener understanding of the consequences of terminating a pregnancy.” The judge said Doe was originally interested in continuing with the pregnancy, but changed her mind after reassessing her situation.

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