A Texas district court judge on Monday granted a temporary restraining order in favor of a 16-year-old girl whose parents tried to force her to have an abortion.
The high school student is 13 weeks pregnant and has affirmed her desire to keep the baby.
"No one should be allowed to decide that an innocent life – especially one that belongs to someone else – is worthless," said Stephen Casey, an attorney with the Alliance Defense Fund.
"The right not to have an abortion is protected by law, and this right isn't relinquished just because someone else considers the child to be an unwanted burden," he added.
Casey filed the motion for a restraining order with Georgetown, Texas-based attorney Gregory R. Terra and Allan E. Parker of The Justice Foundation in San Antonio.
According to the motion, the student was taken to International Health Care Solutions, an abortion facility, in Austin, Texas, earlier this month by her parents. She refused to have the abortion and was taken back home. But two days later, she was taken again for an abortion, this time to Planned Parenthood. She refused to give consent to the abortion.
Recounting the experience, the teen said her mom was yelling at her as they returned to the car after leaving the clinic "because of my choice not to get an abortion."
"We got into a big argument," she continued. "She (the mother) then grabbed me by the back of my pants and started to pull me away. I tried getting her off but she dragged me behind a couple of trees and pushed me down to where I had injured my knee and there was blood dripping down it. She let go and I got back on my feet and started to run away, possibly to get help, but she caught up to me and pulled me by my pants again. When we were by the car, I tried my hardest to hold onto the bed of the truck. My arms slipped off the car and she continued to drag me until I got to the front door of the clinic."
Despite the refusal, the parents have continued to pressure the teen and informed her that they intend to force her against her will to have the abortion performed.
The pregnant teen has accused her parents of being physically, verbally and emotionally abusive and is seeking to be removed from the home.
Her attorneys argue that under Texas and U.S. law, the young girl has a right to make her own reproductive decisions. Notably, the unborn child's father is also opposed to an abortion.
The teen is still living with her parents. A hearing in the case is scheduled for Thursday to consider a motion to convert the temporary restraining order into a temporary injunction.