ARIZONA NEWS

Here’s Interim Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell’s stance on Arizona’s abortion law

Jun 28, 2022, 7:00 PM | Updated: 9:54 pm
Rachel Mitchell (rachelmitchellformaricopa.org Photo)...
Rachel Mitchell (rachelmitchellformaricopa.org Photo)
(rachelmitchellformaricopa.org Photo)

PHOENIX — Interim Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell in a press conference on Tuesday gave her stance on a law in Arizona that bans abortions, which took effect after the Supreme Court last week reversed Roe v. Wade.

“There is a law on the books in Arizona that says that abortion is illegal,” Mitchell said.

The law, still on the books from 1901, bans abortion unless it’s necessary to save the mother’s life. Another law set to take effect later this year makes it a crime for a doctor to perform an abortion after 15 weeks, with exceptions for the mother’s health, and specifically states it does not repeal the other law.

Mitchell said these will be the laws she’s going to look to for addressing potential abortion cases that come to her office.

“This is an extremely difficult issue, it is extremely emotional on both sides and people feel very strongly about it,” Mitchell said.

“My role is to enforce the law and to look at cases as they come to me and make a decision and follow the ethical charging standard that we apply to every case, which is the reasonable likelihood of conviction.”

The charging standard is what Mitchell referenced when mentioning a potential willingness to not prosecute an abortion case resulting from a sexual assault.

“I’ve prosecuted sex crimes for 25 years, I’ve had a number of victims that have got pregnant either through molest, incest-type situations or just molest situations as well as sexual assault and I am not about the business of revictimizing victims,” Mitchell said.

While neither law allows exceptions in instances of rape or incest, Mitchell said the charging standard requires her to look at what a jury is likely to do in each case and what the sentiment might be.

“I think it is important to use your discretion to look at the individual facts and circumstances of certain cases,” she said.

It was unclear what would be needed for her office to not prosecute the case of an abortion from a sexual assault.

Mitchell said it is a speculative situation as no cases have been submitted to her office and it would be irresponsible to say what she’s going to do or require.

“Every case that I’ve ever looked at in my entire career is different from every other case,” Mitchell said. “If a case comes in, I’m going to look at it, I’m going to look at every part of it before I make a decision on how to act.”

Lifetime Windows & Doors

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Apache Junction Police Department photo)...
KTAR.com

Suspect in fatal shooting in Apache Junction turns himself over to police

A young man suspected of fatally shooting his brother in Apache Junction has turned himself over to authorities.
7 hours ago
(AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)...
Luke Forstner

Sheriffs suggest ways to tackle drugs and addiction in Arizona

With big fentanyl busts in the news and numbers up in Arizona, experts are talking about the best ways to address addiction.
7 hours ago
(AP Photo/John Locher, File)...
Wills Rice

Grand Canyon lifts parkwide water restrictions after weeks of shortages

The Grand Canyon National Park announced Tuesday that all water restrictions have been lifted.
7 hours ago
Abrazo Health released a rendering of its first phase of development set to begin in the coming mon...
KTAR.com

Abrazo Health to begin first phase of Buckeye medical building

Abrazo Health released a rendering of its first phase of development that'll bring its sixth major medical campus to the Valley.
7 hours ago
(Arizona Boardwalk Photo)...
KTAR.com

UFO exhibit beaming down to Arizona Boardwalk in Scottsdale in the fall

Space invaders have set their sights on Scottsdale this fall, but it's all perfectly safe.
7 hours ago
(Arizona Humane Society Photo)...
Wills Rice

Empty The Shelters pet adoptions coming to Valley facilities

Maricopa Count and the Bissell Pet Foundations are teaming up for Empty The Shelters for pet adoptions from Oct. 1-8.
7 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Quantum Fiber

How high-speed fiber internet can improve everyday life

Quantum Fiber supplies unlimited data with speeds up to 940 mbps, enough to share 4K videos with coworkers 20 times faster than a cable.
...
SCHWARTZ LASER EYE CENTER

Key dates for Arizona sports fans to look forward to this fall

Fall brings new beginnings in different ways for Arizona’s professional sports teams like the Cardinals and Coyotes.
...
Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

Why your student-athlete’s physical should be conducted by a sports medicine specialist

Dr. Anastasi from Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine in Tempe answers some of the most common questions.
Here’s Interim Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell’s stance on Arizona’s abortion law