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Most Operation Rescue Activists Out of Jail; 2 Held

April 16, 1990|SHERYL STOLBERG | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Authorities on Sunday released most of the 246 anti-abortion activists who were arrested in Saturday's demonstration outside a Mid-Wilshire family planning clinic, but two regional officials of the national Operation Rescue group--both facing felony charges--remained jailed at downtown's Parker Center.

The two leaders, Joseph Foreman and Jeff White, were among four men booked on felony charges of conspiracy and held on $5,000 bail each after they allegedly instructed others to block doorways at the Family Planning Associates Medical Group clinic. A bail commissioner released the other two men on their own recognizance Sunday afternoon.

Sue Finn, an Operation Rescue spokeswoman, said Foreman and White "realized when they were out there (Saturday) that they were risking arrest and might have to spend a couple of days in jail. I'm sure they'd rather be home with their families, though."

The other 242 people arrested were charged with misdemeanors. By Sunday evening, most of the men and all 100 women had been released on their own recognizance, authorities said.

Saturday's demonstration, which brought out an estimated 1,200 protesters representing both sides of the emotional abortion debate, capped a week of protests against abortion in Southern California.

There were no further Operation Rescue demonstrations Sunday, Finn said. However, Los Angeles police did report a minor scuffle at Holy Family Catholic Church in Wilmington, where some parishioners clashed with abortion rights activists who were picketing outside the church. No one was injured.

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