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Indiana Senate backs felony charge if doctors misuse sperm

Posted at 8:52 AM, Apr 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-17 08:52:04-04

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The case of an Indiana fertility doctor using his own sperm to impregnate perhaps dozens of women has led to state legislators voting to make such actions a felony crime.

The Indiana Senate gave final approval Tuesday to a bill allowing felony charges in cases of deception involving human sperm, eggs or embryos.

Some men and women whose mothers were unknowingly impregnated by Dr. Donald Cline in the 1970s and 1980s spoke out for the bill after prosecutors said no state law explicitly prohibited such actions. Cline received a one-year suspended sentence on charges of lying to investigators and surrendered his medical license.

Bill advocates say DNA tests show Cline likely fathered at least 46 children born to his patients.

The bill now goes to Gov. Eric Holcomb for consideration.