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Alabama defines person to include an unborn child in utero at any stage of development, regardless of viability.

Alaska provides that a defendant convicted of murder in the second degree or murder of an unborn child shall be sentenced to a definite term of imprisonment of at least 10 years but no more than 99 years.

Arizona define negligent homicide, manslaughter, first and second degree murder, and specifies that the offenses apply to an unborn child at any stage in its development. The law states that for the purposes of punishment, an unborn child shall be treated like a minor under 12 years of age.

Arkansas defines “person” to include an unborn child in utero at any stage of development. “Unborn child” means a living fetus of 12 weeks or greater gestation.

California defines murder as the unlawful killing of a human being or a fetus with malice aforethought.

Florida defines murder as the willful killing of an unborn quick child by any injury to the mother.

Georgia stipulates that a person commits the offense of feticide if he willfully kills an unborn child so far developed as to be ordinarily called “quick” by causing any injury to the mother of such child.  The penalty for feticide is imprisonment for life.

Idaho declares that murder includes the unlawful killing of a human embryo or fetus under certain conditions. The law provides that manslaughter includes the unlawful killing of a human embryo or fetus without malice.

Illinois includes the following as criminal offenses: intentional homicide of an unborn child; voluntary manslaughter of an unborn child; involuntary manslaughter of an unborn child; reckless homicide of an unborn child.

Indiana defines feticide as the intentional termination of a human pregnancy with an intention other than to produce a live birth or to remove a dead fetus.

Iowa provides penalties for the nonconsensual termination or serious injury to a human pregnancy.

Kansas makes it possible to charge someone with murder, manslaughter, vehicular homicide or battery for killing or harming a fetus. It provides the definition of "person" for those specific crimes, including the definition of an unborn child that includes any stage of gestation from fertilization to birth.

Kentucky allows the state to charge an individual with a separate crime for terminating a fetus during the commission of an act that injures or kills a pregnant woman.

Louisiana defines feticide as the killing of an unborn child by the act, procurement, or culpable omission of a person other than the mother of the unborn child. State law defines “person” as a human being from the moment of fertilization and implantation and also includes a body of persons, whether incorporated or not.  “Unborn child” means any individual of the human species from fertilization and implantation until birth.

Maine defines the crimes of murder, felony murder, assault, aggravated assault and elevated aggravated assault against an unborn child.

Maryland establishes that a prosecution may be instituted for murder, manslaughter, or unlawful homicide under certain conditions for an act or failure to act that causes the death of a viable fetus.

Massachusetts rules that a viable fetus is within the ambit of the term “person” in the vehicular homicide statute.

Michigan defines manslaughter as the willful killing of an unborn quick child by any injury to the mother of such child.

Minnesota provides penalties for an assault to a pregnant woman and subsequent harm to an unborn child.

Mississippi includes the death of a fetus in wrongful death statute as murder or manslaughter.

Nebraska defines murder of an unborn child in the first degree, murder in the second degree, and manslaughter.

Nevada defines manslaughter as a person who willfully kills an unborn quick child by any injury committed upon the mother of the child.

North Carolina states that any person, who in the commission of a felony, causes injury to a woman, knowing the woman to be pregnant, in which injury results in the miscarriage or stillbirth by the woman is guilty of a felony that is one class higher than the felony committed.

North Dakota defines the murder and manslaughter of an unborn child and provides penalties.

Ohio law applies to a person which includes an “unborn member of the species Homo sapiens, who is or was carried in the womb of another.”

Oklahoma defines unborn child as a human being.

Pennsylvania defines homicide of an unborn child.  An individual commits criminal homicide of an unborn child if the individual intentionally, knowingly, recklessly or negligently causes the death of an unborn child.

Rhode Island stipulates that the willful killing of an unborn quick child by any injury to the mother of that child is deemed manslaughter.

South Carolina provides that a person who commits a violent crime that causes the death of, or injury to, a child in utero is guilty of a separate offense and that the person must be punished as if the death or injury occurred to the unborn child’s mother.

South Dakota defines homicide as murder in the first degree to include the death of a person or any other human being, including an unborn child.

Tennessee defines “another” and “another person” as a viable fetus of a human being when any such term refers to the victim of any act made criminal by the provisions of the law.

Texas defines an individual as a human being who is alive, including an unborn child at every stage of gestation from fertilization until birth.

Utah declares that a person commits criminal homicide if he intentionally, knowingly, recklessly causes the death of another human being, including an unborn child.

Virginia declares that any person who unlawfully, willfully, deliberately, maliciously and with premeditation kills a fetus is guilty of a Class 2 felony.

Washington declares that a person is guilty of manslaughter in the first degree when he intentionally and unlawfully kills an unborn quick child by inflicting any injury upon the mother of such child.

West Virginia recognizes an embryo or fetus as a distinct unborn victim of certain crimes of violence against a person, including homicide and manslaughter.

Wisconsin declares that any person who intentionally destroys the life of an unborn quick child; or causes the death of the mother by an act done with intent to destroy the life of an unborn child is guilty of homicide.


On January 22, 1973 the Supreme Court, in Roe v. Wade, determined that abortion is a "right in the concept of personal 'liberty' embodied in the Fourteenth Amendment’s Due Process Clause; or in personal, marital, familial, and sexual privacy said to be protected by the Bill of Rights or its penumbras." In the 37 years since Roe, 50 million unborn children have been killed in their mother's womb–more than a 9/11 massacre for 13,514 straight days.


"They show that the work of the law is written in their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them on that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus" (Romans 2:15-16).

Note: The state laws are taken from the website of The National Conference of State Legislatures, Fetal Homicide Laws.

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13 thoughts on “Accusing and Excusing for 37 Years”

  1. J. Claire M. says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this information for us. It is just amazing the double standards that are legally set up in this country. May God spare the little unborn children…and if it pleases Him may He save each and every soul and take them home to be with Him.

  2. Isn’t protecting the unborn also a form of social justice? Why don’t the mainline and pomo’s/emergents get this?

    And on a related topic, why do those who call for a “consistent ethic of life” that opposes both abortion and capital punishment, compare unborn children who are innocent (in terms of breaking postive law, if not in terms of original sin) with guilty persons who have committed premeditated murder? What’s consistent about that?

  3. CT says:

    Dr. Blacketer,

    You raise an interesting point: Why don’t more Christians compare unborn children with criminals who deserve far worse than the death penalty? Or what is your position: do unborn babies deserve eternal suffering in hell?

  4. Jason says:

    Awesome. You left out my state of Missouri, though.

  5. Bob says:

    As hideous and repulsive as abortion is, God does not condemn the murdered unborn to Hell, CT. They instead, will judge the angels.

  6. CT says:

    Bob, I tend to agree. The surprising implication of this, however, is that abortion is in the interests of the unborn. No court ruling has saved one one-thousandth of the number of souls saved by Roe v. Wade.

  7. Bob says:

    Yes, even what He hates He will turn around and redeem for the final glory of His name.

  8. CT says:

    Exactly, Bob! But it surprises me how Christian pro-life activist’s always manage to ignore this. It’s fine to oppose abortion for the sake of piety, but we flatter and deceive ourselves when we think we’re doing this for the sake of the unborn. From the standpoint of an unborn child, abortion is an amazing gift for which many souls are presumably eternally grateful.

    And that’s the good news about abortion.

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Kevin DeYoung

Kevin DeYoung is senior pastor of University Reformed Church (PCA) in East Lansing, Michigan, near Michigan State University. He and his wife Trisha have six young children. You can follow him on Twitter.

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