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Abortion doc reports threat; arrest follows

SPOKANE, Wash. (BP)–Warren Hern said he has received multiple death threats since entering the abortion business in 1973 but began taking them more seriously after fellow late-term abortion doctor George Tiller was killed at his Wichita, Kan., church in May.

Hern, of Boulder, Colo., reported the latest threat to authorities, resulting in the arrest of a senior citizen in Spokane, Wash.

Donald Hertz, 70, arrested Aug. 26 for threatening Hern’s family, has been charged with communicating a threat via interstate commerce and violating the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act. If found guilty, Hertz could receive a prison sentence of as much as six years and a maximum fine of $350,000.

Hertz will plead not guilty, his lawyer told The New York Times.

Hertz’s arrest followed an investigation that began following a June 23 phone call to Hern’s abortion clinic in Colorado. According to the indictment, Hertz said two Utah men would kill Hern’s family, The Times reported.

The country’s major pro-life organizations condemned Tiller’s slaying and have repudiated other acts of violence against abortion providers.

“Clearly the killing of abortion providers is unbiblical, un-Christian and un-American,” said Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, after Tiller’s murder. “People who truly believe in the sanctity of human life believe in the sanctity of the lives of abortion providers as well as the unborn babies who are aborted.”

The ERLC issued a document in 1994 stating that the killing of abortion doctors “is not a moral option for Christians.” The publication, titled “The Struggle Against Abortion: Why the Use of Lethal Force is Not Morally Justifiable,” became known as the Nashville Declaration of Conscience. It is available at http://erlc.com/documents/pdf/statement_of_conscience.pdf.
Compiled by Baptist Press Washington bureau chief Tom Strode.

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