Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost said there is no evidence that showed a 10-year-old girl was raped and impregnated, following reports that claimed a girl in such a predicament was forced to travel across state lines to get an abortion.
The story said that the girl was reportedly denied an abortion in Ohio and had to travel to Indiana to have the procedure. The Indianapolis Star published the story on July 1 and attributed the story solely to an Indianapolis-based obstetrician-gynecologist, Dr. Caitlan Bernard.
When asked by Fox News host Jesse Watters in an interview on Monday about whether there were any alerts about investigations into such a case, such as police reports, Yost responded: “Not a whisper.”
Yost said that his office has regular contact with prosecutors, local police, and sheriffs, but there was “not a whisper anywhere” of a case involving a raped 10-year-old girl.
The Ohio attorney general, a Republican, also said that his office runs the state crime lab, but also did not come across any case reports resembling the story.
“Any case like this, you’re going to have a rape kit, you’re going to have biological evidence, and you would be looking for DNA analysis, which we do most of the DNA analysis in Ohio. There is no case request for analysis that looks anything like this,” he said.
Yost also acknowledged that it is illegal in Ohio to not report the rape of a minor and that if any doctor in Ohio failed to report such a case, they should be prosecuted.
He also noted that Bernard, the OBGYN in Indiana, isn’t in the jurisdiction of Ohio law enforcement.
“We don’t know who the originating doctor in Ohio was—if they even exist. But the bottom line is, it is a crime if you’re a mandated reporter to fail to report,” Yost said.
“It’s also the fact that in Ohio, the rape of a 10-year-old means life in prison. I know our prosecutors and cops in this state. There’s not one of them that wouldn’t be turning over every rock in their jurisdiction if they had the slightest hint that this occurred there.”
Biden Mentions Rape Story in Address
President Joe Biden referenced the story on July 8 while pushing for access to abortions across the country.
“Just last week, it was reported that a 10-year-old girl was a rape victim in Ohio—10 years old—and she was forced to have to travel out of the state, to Indiana, to seek to terminate the [pregnancy] and maybe save her life. That’s—the last part is my judgment,” Biden said, adding later, “A 10-year-old girl should be forced to give birth to a rapist’s child? I can tell you what: I don’t. I can’t think of anything as much more extreme.”
The story drew skepticism, however, after a reporter for The Washington Post, in an analysis published on July 9, said the story was “very difficult” to verify.
Fact-checking website Snopes separately said it hasn’t been able to “independently corroborate the abortion claim.”
Bernard, who is an abortion provider and professor at Indiana University’s School of Medicine, has not shared additional details pertaining to the story such as where the alleged rape took place, who the girl’s doctor is, or whether the case has been reported to law enforcement, and if so, whether charges have been filed.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters on July 8 she had no information to share on the matter when asked about whether the White House has confirmed that local law enforcement knows the identity of the alleged 10-year-old girl.
Bernard has not immediately responded to a request for comment from The Epoch Times.
Bill Pan contributed to this report.