A jury acquitted a Kansas Coalition of Life protester of battery. A Wichita municipal court convicted David Schmidt, 74, in February, but a Sedgwick County District Court jury acquitted Schmidt on appeal.
Schmidt was charged with battery after a security guard at the South Wind Women’s Center in Wichita attempted to remove a sign depicting a smiling baby positioned near the abortion clinic entrance on July 13. Schmidt, a volunteer, was assisting with Kansas Coalition for Life’s efforts to offer on-site counseling to women entering abortion clinics. Shmidt shoved the security guard who tried to remove his sign, and the city charged Schmidt, a blind, elderly man, with battery.
The Wichita Eagle reporter apparently took issue with the make-up of the jury.
“The six-member, all-male jury deliberated about 15 minutes before acquitting Schmidt after a two-day trial,” the Eagle story reads.
The July 13 dust-up near South Wind abortion clinic was one of several attempts to remove KCFL signs, who have conducted more than 35,000 hours of sidewalk protests in the last dozen years. Mark Geitzen, president of KCFL, said in that time there have only two protesters have ever been arrested.
In the other case, a protester was arrested for stepping onto clinic property, though he was actually in the public right-of-way. That case was dismissed.