Philadelphia pro-life liberal indicted by DOJ says Biden admin has 'pro-abortion,' 'prosecutorial' agenda


A Pennsylvania man facing federal charges related to the alleged blocking of access to a Washington, D.C., clinic that provides women’s reproductive health services along with nine others said the Biden administration is possibly selectively targeting pro-life advocates.

Last week a grand jury indicted Herb Geraghty, 26, a Pittsburgh resident, on charges of conspiracy against rights and violating the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act, which makes it a federal crime to use threats, force or physical obstruction to prevent people from providing or obtaining services at reproductive health care clinics.

Geraghty, an atheist who supports all forms of human rights and regularly denounces all forms of injustice, would not comment on the charges against him or the alleged incident, but noted that all his advocacy is non-violent.  

“What they’re (the Justice Department) alleging was itself non-violent,” he told Fox News. “This is not like the attacks we’ve seen on pregnancy centers or pro-life churches. No one is accused of firebombing an abortion clinic in this case.”


Herb Geraghty, 26, is charged with nine other defendants for allegedly blocking access to a Washington, D.C., clinic that provides women's reproductive health services.

Herb Geraghty, 26, is charged with nine other defendants for allegedly blocking access to a Washington, D.C., clinic that provides women’s reproductive health services.
(Courtesy of Herb Geraghty)

Geraghty voiced concerns with the FACE Act and accused the Justice Department of acting with a political bias.

“We know that the Biden administration has a legislative pro-abortion agenda and a judicial pro-abortion agenda, and I think many people are suspecting that there’s also now this prosecutorial agenda to hand over as many pro-life activists and leaders heads on a platter to the abortion industry,” he said. 

“To me, it seems that this is retaliation for Dobbs,” he added, referring to the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization ruling this year by the U.S. Supreme Court that overturned Roe v. Wade and ended the recognition of a constitutional right to abortion.

The Justice Department has charged Geraghty and nine other defendants — Lauren Handy, Jonathan Darnel, Jay Smith, Paulette Harlow, Jean Marshall, John Hinshaw, Heather Idoni, William Goodman and Joan Bell — for allegedly blocking access to a clinic in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 22, 2020. 

Federal prosecutors said several of the defendants traveled to Washington from other states and used force to gain access to and block access to the unnamed clinic and used tools to barricade themselves inside, including ropes and chains, the indictment said. 


Handy allegedly called the clinic days earlier under the name “Hazel Jenkins” and made a 9 a.m. appointment for reproductive health services for the morning of the alleged incident, prosecutors said. 

When the clinic doors opened to admit patients with scheduled appointments, all the defendants except Darnel pushed their way inside, authorities said. One nurse stumbled and sprained her ankle. Once inside, several of the defendants blocked two clinic doors, court documents state. 

They also moved chairs to the waiting room to block the door to the clinic treatment area, prosecutors said. Handy directed the others on what to do and brought a duffel bag with a chain and rope, authorities said. 

Five of the defendants used the chain and rope to tie themselves together to block passage to the treatment area. Two others stood and blocked an employee entrance area, the complaint states. They allegedly blocked an employee from entering the treatment area. Handy stood at the main entrance and blocked people from entering the waiting room, prosecutors said. 

Geraghty also stood with Handy at times to block the main doorway, according to court documents. Darnel allegedly livestreamed the event from outside. 

“[T]he rescuers are doing their job,” he said, according to court documents. “They’re not allowing women to enter the abortion clinic. As long as they’re in there, no women can go in to kill their children.”


Geraghty, who marched with Black Lives Matter protesters after the death of George Floyd and supports abolishing the death penalty, said voicing a pro-life stance shouldn’t be controversial and will continue to speak out against injustice. 

“I understand that in our current political climate that these beliefs that I hold – that human beings are worthy of human rights and protections from conception to natural death is controversial – but I don’t think it should be,” he said. “When we look back and see all the different human rights abuses that we allow as a country, whether it’s states with extremist late-term abortions or states with the death penalty, it’s all violence, and it’s all unacceptable, and we should be working to end it.”

Each defendant faces up to 11 years in prison and hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines. 


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