...By Dorcas Funmi for TDPel Media.
The Department of Justice has brought FACE Act charges against two Florida residents, Caleb Freestone and Amber Smith-Stewart, for spray-painting threats on a pro-life clinic, an Archdiocese of Miami pro-life pregnancy center, and one of Heartbeat of Miami’s pro-life pregnancy centers.
The charges could bring civil penalties of up to $170,000 each for the alleged perpetrators.
The Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act of 1994 (the FACE Act) allows criminal and civil penalties for those who intimidate or interfere with the provision of reproductive health services by force or threat of force.
The Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody has filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court Middle District of Florida Tampa Division on March 29. Moody asked that Freestone and Smith-Stewart each pay $30,000 in damages and civil penalties of $140,000.
She said, “Antifa and Jane’s Revenge are criminal organizations and must answer for their crimes in Florida.
I am taking action to hold their members accountable for attempting to intimidate and threaten law-abiding citizens in our state.”
The Jane’s Revenge collective, which is apparently part of a loosely organized anarchist movement of self-described anti-fascists known as “Antifa,” is responsible for the pro-abortion vandalism and threats against pro-life pregnancy centers.
They have engaged in attacks against pro-life pregnancy centers, advocacy groups, and churches after the May 2022 leak of a draft Supreme Court decision in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health case that would overturn Roe v. Wade.
Heartbeat of Miami, the pro-life pregnancy center that was defaced and spray-painted by the alleged perpetrators, filed a lawsuit against Freestone, Smith-Stewart, and a third defendant, Annarella Rivera.
The lawsuit alleges that in addition to the defacing and spray-painting of Heartbeat’s property, the defendants hacked the guest list for the pro-life group’s annual gala so they could attend and disrupt it.
Jeremy Dys, special counsel for litigation and communications at First Liberty Institute, says the legal action is an opportunity to investigate the nature of Jane’s Revenge and its supporters.
The legal group’s lawsuit is on behalf of Heartbeat of Miami pregnancy center in Hialeah against the alleged perpetrators.
Dys adds, “We’re going to find out if Jane’s Revenge is nothing more than a paper tiger spray-painted on the walls across the country or if they are an actual network of underground criminals seeking to injure or intimidate or interfere with access to life-affirming reproductive health care facilities.”
The indictment against four defendants in incidents targeting pro-life pregnancy centers in Florida alleges that Gabriella Oropesa and Rivera, along with Freestone and Smith-Stewart, spray-painted threats on the Archdiocese of Miami’s Hollywood pregnancy center. The threats included the message, “If abortions aren’t safe then neither are you.”
Additionally, all four defendants face charges of engaging in a “conspiracy against rights” for attempting to prevent employees at pro-life pregnancy centers from providing services.
Pro-abortion attacks following the Supreme Court leak in May 2022 have targeted 34 Catholic churches, 60 pregnancy centers, one maternity home, three political organizations, six billboards, one political figure, and one memorial.