Prosecutors in Alabama have dropped the manslaughter charge against Marshae Jones, 27, whose unborn baby died when she was shot by another woman last December, her lawyer has confirmed.
Jones, 27, was five months pregnant when she got into a fight with 23-year-old Ebony Jemison, a co-worker, in Pleasant Grove, Ala. Police say Jemison was losing the fight when she pulled out a gun and fired. The bullet killed Jones’ fetus. On June 26, Jones was arrested on a manslaughter charge after a grand jury indicted her.
Jefferson County District Attorney Lynneice Washington announced on Wednesday that no legal action would be taken in the case.
“There are no winners in this case, only losers in the sad ordeal,” Washington said , according to WBMA-LD in Birmingham.
Jemison was originally charged with manslaughter, but a Jefferson County grand jury decided not to indict her.
Jones’ lawyer filed a motion to dismiss the charge, saying prosecutors used “a flawed and twisted rationale” to justify bringing the case before the grand jury.
The case drew national attention because Jones was charged in the death of her fetus because of the actions of someone else. Alabama had also been in the spotlight for passing a law in May that all but banned abortion and made performing the procedure punishable by prison time. In 2018, voters approved a “personhood” amendment that granted rights to fetuses.
Montre D. Carodine, a law professor at the University of Alabama School of Law, said she wasn’t surprised by the D.A.’s decision to drop the case.
“I think she is in touch with the community I think she looked at it from the perspective of a black woman. She received as lot of criticism,” Carodine tells TIME. “It’s a case that advocates for women will celebrate, but I also think that it’s a case that will result in significant backlash in the anti-abortion corner.”
The state’s American Civil Liberties Union director, said the charges were the result of Alabama officials “criminalizing pregnancy.”
More Must-Read Stories From TIME
- How an Online Pharmacy Sold Millions Worth Of Dubious COVID-19 Drugs — While Patients Paid the Price
- Why Literally Millions of Americans Are Quitting Their Jobs
- Meet the Women Participating in the Study That Could Change Future of Breast Cancer
- Inside the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of Tomorrow's Business Leaders
- An Innovative Washington Law Aims to Get Foreign-Trained Doctors Back in Hospitals
- Why the Ex-Husband of a Missing Chinese Billionaire Is Risking All to Tell Their Story
- Timothée Chalamet Wants You to Wear Your Heart on Your Sleeve