Indiana AG’s investigation of Dr. Caitlin Bernard involves consumer complaints from people who have never interacted with the doctor, her lawyer says

Dr. Caitlin Bernard helped the child in late June, after Ohio banned nearly all abortions after six weeks’ gestation, she told CNN earlier this month.

Todd Rokita, Indiana Attorney General announced earlier in July that his office was investigating whether Bernard potentially violated reporting and confidentiality laws in this matter. Rokita reiterated Wednesday that the investigation is continuing despite a cease and desist letter from his attorney, who said Bernard followed “all relevant policies, procedures and regulations.”

Kathleen DeLaney, Bernard’s attorney, said in a press release Thursday that the attorney general sent Bernard six letters initiating investigations into consumer complaints from residents of California, Kentucky, Missouri, Ohio and one from Indiana.

“Each complaint form confirms that the person had no interaction with Dr. Bernard,” DeLaney said. “None of the complaints were from a ‘consumer’ who purchased goods or services from Dr. Bernard or even from anyone who had direct communication with Dr. Bernard.”

The lawyer further alleged that the complaints contained no first-hand knowledge and were “riddled with inaccuracies”.

In response to CNN’s request for comment, Rokita’s office said they were “not discussing details of the investigations.”

“The Attorney General’s office is investigating various consumer complaints within the Consumer Protection Division, which is a large division within the office,” Kelly Stevenson, the attorney general’s press secretary, said in an email. mail. “We do not discuss the details of the investigations.”

DeLaney sent a cease and desist letter to the Attorney General on July 15 asking him to stop “making false and misleading statements about Dr. Bernard’s alleged misconduct in his profession, which in itself constitutes defamation.” Last week, Bernard’s attorneys filed a notice of tort claim against Rokita and his office in the early stages of a potential defamation suit for public comments he made about Bernard.

Rokita on Wednesday called Bernard’s libel suit against him “baseless.” “The baseless libel complaint and other charges are really just attempts to distract, intimidate and obstruct my office’s monumental progress in saving lives,” he told CNN in a statement. communicated.

Indiana attorney general is investigating doctor who provided abortion services to 10-year-old Ohio rape victim, doctor's attorney says

In Thursday’s statement, DeLaney said the Attorney General “continues to use his office to attempt to intimidate Dr. Caitlin Bernard. We urge Mr. Rokita to stop wasting taxpayer dollars and our time on his campaign. absurd against Dr. Bernard for doing his job as a doctor properly and according to law.”

Under Indiana law, an abortion performed on a person under the age of 16 must be reported to the state Department of Health as well as the Department of Children’s Services within three days of the abortion. procedure.

Bernard reported the abortion procedure to the Indiana Department of Health on July 2 — two days after it was performed — as required by the department, according to agency documents obtained by CNN. CNN contacted the Indiana Department of Children’s Services to find out if Bernard also filed the report with their office.

Bernard’s employer, Indiana University Health, conducted a review into this matter with Bernard’s “full cooperation” and determined that it was “in compliance with privacy laws,” he said in a press release at the beginning of the month.

CNN’s Sarah Boxer contributed to this report.

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