Legal Abortion Death: Shirley Payne, 33 (Hemorrhage Due To Uterine Perforation)

Articles indicate that Shirley Payne, age 33, underwent a safe and legal abortion on January 4, 1983 at Woman’s Care Center in Miami. She was 16-18 weeks pregnant.

Shirley suffered a perforated uterus. When paramedics arrived on the scene, they reportedly found Shirley lying on a couch, bleeding heavily.

Shirley arrived at the hospital in critical condition due to delay of transfer. An emergency hysterectomy was performed to try to save Shirley’s life, but she bled to death in surgery.

Clinic documents were unclear as to who did Shirley’s abortion.

Ruth Montero, Myrta Baptiste, Maura Morales, and Shirley Payne all died in a clinic owned by Hipolito Barreiro, trained in Argentina and West Africa, but not licensed in U.S. Barreiro was accused of practicing without a license and tampering with witness.

Miami Herald 1-5-83; Obstetrics & Gynecology September 1986; CDC Abortion Surveillance 1982; Florida Today 6-1-83

Credit: Christina Dunigan

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